French-Algerian artist taking on colonialism and its legacies
Taking part in three biennials while staging two museum exhibitions and a gallery show has kept Attia busy. His participation in the Venice Biennale and the Bienal de Cuenca was topped off by a special project in Dakar as part of the Sharjah Biennial’s expanded field of activity this year. In October the artist, who was born in France to Algerian parents, won the $82,000 Joan Miró Prize in recognition of his ongoing interrogation of colonialism and its legacies: themes evident in exhibitions at Block Museum of Art, Illinois, and the MCA Australia, Sydney. La Colonie, Attia’s art space in Paris (which opened last year as a place ‘built around the desire to answer to the compelling urgency of social and cultural reparations’) continues to engage with the local immigrant population; less generously, late last year the artist took legal action over what he claims to be the appropriation of his 2007 sculpture Ghost in a music video for rappers Dosseh and Nekfeu.