Longing — The work of Tarek Al-Ghoussein

Author ········· Tarek Al-Ghoussein
Published ······ Issue 03, 2011
Section ·······  Art & Design

Published in Kalimat, Issue 03 (read this issue)

By Tarek Al-Ghoussein

In the last ten years while living in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) I have witnessed tremendous change that has challenged my understanding of what is meant by the term “identity”. Since 2003, I have explored various aspects of “identity” through my work as a photographer. The rapid transformation of the UAE has been a catalyst and starting point for an investigation into issues related to my own personal relation to land and place. The anonymity of the desert has offered the perfect stage for the investigation.

The "C Series" is an extension of themes I have been exploring for the past few years. While the work has been concerned with barriers, land, longing and belonging, this most recent series departs from these defining/confining concepts and instead focuses on visualised ideas of transience.

Although I did not set out to investigate the notion of transience, my work has developed from a process of exploring ideas related to land and place. While unexpected, the strong emphasis on longing led to a consideration of changing landscapes and ephemeral moments that are fixed in time rather than located in a specific place.

The “D Series” continues the exploration by examining the relationship between the subject and space, particularly the relationship between the solitary figure and the temporary boundaries that define a place. The series has allowed me to explore how the individual both affects and is affected by space.