Born Casablanca (MA), 1992
Sad Ali, Happy Taha, 2017, 3'14", video with sound
S-LINKS: Autumn version, 2017, 420x220 cm, multi-media installation
Salim Bayri, while making clay sculptures, hangs out in obsolete online chatrooms where strangeness, blasphemy, and pulling each other’s leg are common practice. As a polyglot, Bayri is able to enter many of the different rooms where diasporas gather.
His alter ego “Sad Ali,” short for Sad Alien, reflects this approach. Sad Ali is a silent character with a translucent body – he explores but is not a participant. Floating between scenes he is granted a fluidity that cannot be pinned down.
In his studio, Bayri trains in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu together with other residents twice a week. He wonders how both wrestling and clay relate to the feeling of being sandwiched between a disenchanted technocracy and exciting belief systems.