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Amina Menia

Artist 245

Amina Menia

Sculptural interventions


Amina Menia (born 1976) is an Algerian mixed-media artist. Her work questions the relationship between architectural and historical spaces and challenges conventional notions around the exhibition space.

Her spatial and architectural interventions are subtle arrangements that interact with viewers and the spaces they occupy. With a minimal lexicon, she underlines historical places, revisits urban legends, points out urban gaps by ephemeral interventions. By working across installation and sculpture, her art encourages exchange, interaction and attempts to probe social changes through ‘daily urban practices’.

She has different series like ‘Extra-Muros’ with site specific installations throughout Algiers – an invitation to revisit this city and then its reappropriation. The work has encountered so many obstacles that most of its chapters remain unrealised. Therefore, it intersects directly with its problematics of denouncing confiscated spaces, confiscated memory and lack of freedom.

In her project ‘Chrysanthemums’, she proposes a photographic installation in frontal relation with the viewer. It’s a photography series which captures commemorative stelae and monuments dedicated to martyrs who laid down their lives in service to Algeria during the Algerian War of Independence (1954–62).

Menia focuses on Algeria’s recent past, fraught with colonial violence and anti-colonial pushback, which feed postcolonial anxiety. 

She delves into the most emblematic areas of the Algerian capital to unearth unwelcome histories about her country’s past, interrogating public space and her compatriots’ relations to it. Over the years, she has become an expert at stepping into the breach so as to physically touch the spaces confiscated from locals.

When asked of her choice to intervene confrontation work in public spaces Menia explains, “ The public domain has a strong political dimension. Delving into this field evokes the desire to win back spaces, to reclaim places both physical and full of meaning and history. My idea was to attract everyone and touch them through spaces that are physically prohibited to us.’

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