critically acclaimed artist siba sahabi translates cultural heritage into contemporary design through an interpretation of both historical forms and concepts. using alhazen’s camera obscura principles, also known as a pinhole camera, sahabi’s sculptures are made out of steel, copper and brass and were treated, on their interior surfaces, with a light sensitive emulsion. she then exposed these surfaces to light through three to six pinholes per object and developed the black and white images in a darkroom.
the sculptures are made out of steel, copper and brass
images © thomas aangeenbrug
after coating the photographs with resin, each camera obscura is finally re-assembled with the photographs facing outwards. the final sculptures simultaneously embody both states: apparatus and work of art. siba’s cameras — taking the form of abstract pyramids — express the interaction between middle eastern and european culture through art and science.
the photographic collages on the surface of each object were previously captured inside the same shape using the principles of a pinhole camera
the launch of ‘obscura’ in amsterdam is a way to connect the middle east to europe. after having spent four weeks in cairo, the sculptures create a form of double exposure: showing the photographs of the city and—due to the shiny resin coating—reflecting the european surroundings.
the project is realized with the support of the amsterdams fonds voor de kunst, netherlands-flemish institute in cairo and stichting stokroos
after coating the photographs with resin each camera obscura was finally re-assembled with the photographs facing outwards
the final sculptures simultaneously embody both states: apparatus and work of art
siba’s cameras express the interaction between middle eastern and european culture through art and science
the project is an homage to the scientist and philosopher alhazen, who is considered to be the father of optics
edited by: lynn chaya | designboom