Basim Magdy. No Shooting Stars
Catalogue of the exhibition

The film No Shooting Stars by Basim Magdy is built around the personal narrative of an unidentified inhabitant of the ocean space, a territory that lays dormant on the margins of our awareness and does not enter history books. Dream-like scenes drift in dissonance with a narration that has no beginning or end. It unfolds like a poem that is affected by the ocean’s secrets but offers no explanation about who is living under the water’s surface, instead meandering through loops of imagination. The image of who exactly the narrator is slips away as soon as it takes shape, reflecting the logic of the unstable grounds of water space.

Magdy’s earlier works have often been humorous reflections marked by a scepticism towards utopian states and an anticipation of dystopian outcomes. No Shooting Stars inversely reveals a sense of astonishment at the unknown. Adopting a perspective of awe, Magdy recognises our ignorance of, and inability to apprehend, the open seas, a space that operates according to its own logic, another system of knowledge that is different from the one we apply. Subsequently, he abandons the quest to capture the intrinsic nature of the water territories and the film becomes a meditation on the glimpses of its mystery.

This book explores the ideas emanating from this work through an interview with the artist by Heidi Ballet. Resonating with Basim Magdy’s project, a text by Kate Sutton recounts the mysteries of water and the Palmyra atoll in the Pacific Ocean.

Interview with the artist by Heidi Ballet and text by Kate Sutton.
Co-edition: Jeu de Paume, Paris & CAPC, Bordeaux, 2016.
Bilingual French / English, 14 euros.

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