In the video diptych Open Your Eyes, Kader Attia organizes images by appropriating the basic functions of the Western art museum—collection, conservation, education—and a methodology typically used in teaching art history: the slide show. The images that he presents are divided into two bodies of work. The first one shows repaired objects, which he has photographed in museum storage spaces; in the other are exhibited portraits of wounded First World War soldiers drawn from the archives of various army museums. This dynamic juxtaposition allows Attia, among other things, to examine the complex relationships between West and East. He explores the “restoration” of the human body by comparing it to the concept of repair in “extra-occidental,” or non-Western, cultures.
Open Your Eyes (2010)