Sahara Nomad and landscape
Lacan in the Sahara Sarah Trouche
or the performativity of the other
From the Hebrew, Sara, “princess”
From the Arabic, “brunette with a tawny complexion”
From the Arabic, sahra, “desert”.
Sarah Trouche, a visual artist and performer, has fully integrated her artistry into the economics of the globalized art world by, paradoxically, focusing for the most part on the outskirts of the global village. Her journeys are therefore motivated by the will to meet the “other”, to discover minorities and make their voices heard in the larger mediatized world from which they are slowly being evicted by the global culture. In her last series, Actions in Sahara, she joined a nomad community in the desert where she devised three performances whose central thrust is to highlight those lifestyles. Staying true to her tried and tested mo., which reconciles esthetic formalism and political commitment, she performs her actions naked, wearing a chèche (their traditional headscarf), entirely painted in indigo, which is the color of their linen clothes. Inchallah, the first performance, consists in piling up miniature blue mosques, echoing an unsteady building blocks game, thereby underscoring the frailty of religious ideology. For the second performance, Nomad, she turns herself into the stanchion of a tribal tent, which she pitched then undid using her scarf and some posts, thereby paying tribute to alternative conceptions of habitat. Drawing Landscape, the last performance, borrows its esthetic from land art conventions: upright and motionless, positioned in the center of a circle delineated by a speeding four-by-four, she faces an artificially-created sandstorm, thereby poetizing the evolution of those sandy landscapes in constant rearrangement. Her work comprehensively depicts the dissonances of a fast-mutating world, torn between tradition and modernity, between micro and macro paradigms, between a growing global standardization and the hotbeds of resistance to the former. At the threshold of physical and mental frontiers, Sarah Trouche positions herself as a watchdog against contemporary dangers, deploying an informed and opinionated body of work that denounces the failures of globalization and the collapse of our respect for each other’s differences that it engenders.
Curator Biennale de Marrakech / Youth talking