Elyas Alavi, Salt and Pomegranate, 2018. Pomegranate, salt, neon light, suicide bomber's vest. Dimensions variable. Image by Christo Crocker
Poignant and brave, Daydreamer Wolf elevates the voice of Afghani-born artist and award-winning poet Elyas Alavi to new heights. This compelling project, developed for the 2018 Next Wave x ACE Open x Firstdraft co-commission and previously exhibited in Melbourne and Sydney, documents Alavi’s experience as a Hazara refugee and migrant to Australia.
Working across painting, sculpture, documentary video and poetry, Alavi’s practice engages with ideas of family, memory, national identity and displacement. Daydreamer Wolf is his largest body of work to date, and offers a timely and highly personal perspective on the trials and realities of the contemporary refugee experience.
At ACE Open, a specially-commissioned installation invites visitors to create their own interpretation of what ‘home’ means, culminating in a performance led by Alavi to mark the end of the exhibition.
Elyas Alavi, Where is Homeland, 2018. Neon, acrylic on canvas, 2 panels, 150 x 75 cm each. Image by Christo Crocker.
Elyas Alavi is a visual artist and poet based in Adelaide. His practice focusses on ideas of memory, displacement, exile, social justice, gender and human nature. Alavi was born in Afghanistan, moved to Iran as a child following the intensification of war in his homeland and in late 2007 he moved to Australia as refugee at risk. Alavi graduated from a Masters by Research (Visual Arts) at the University of South Australia in 2015 and has exhibited nationally and internationally including IFA Gallery (Kabul), Niyavaran Gallery (Tehran), Jugglers Art Space (Brisbane), The Walker Street Gallery (Melbourne), and CACSA Project Space and Fontanelle Gallery (both Adelaide). Alavi also is also an internationally renowned poet. He has published three poetry books in Iran and Afghanistan: his first book, I’m A Daydreamer Wolf, was published in 2008 in Tehran, followed by Some Wounds in 2012 in Kabul, and Hodood in 2015 in Tehran. He regularly runs art and poetry workshops in community centres and schools in Adelaide.
Daydreamer Wolf is a Next Wave x ACE Open x Firstdraft co-commission and has been assisted by Abbotsford Convent, Chapter House Lane and the Australian Government through Australia Council, its arts funding and advisory body.
Saturday 18 May, 4-6PM
Opening, artist talk, and publication launch
Visit ACE Open between 11AM and 4PM Tuesday-Saturday.