Exhibition Sites

Site #3 Wesam Al Asali

Urgent sustenance       
Today, there are two searches for our sustenance, one in geography and one in history. We are looking for materials to process, cook, sell and buy. We are also looking for inherent knowledge that we reproduce: the recipe of a previous generation, their food production and processing methods, and their alternatives that do not know electricity. In the calamity (our calamity), the past becomes a need for survival, not a luxury for identity, and the memory becomes a resistance front, not a refuge for nostalgia. In three vocabularies from Syria, I explain old-new making habits related to food and its crafts, from the preparation of Qamar al-Din to the crafts of making mud ovens (tanners) and mobile vendor carts. I establish these making habits in the architecture and urbanization of cities and their countryside. I follow their heroes step by step in their work, and together we laugh at the patent culture that intentionally draws boundaries between knowledge and its communities. Urgent Sustenance is part of a textual-visual collection on making cultures in the Arab region.