Massinissa Selmani

(Algeria, 1980)

Massinissa Selmani lives and works in Tours since 2005. His method of working is based on using drawing as a first form of documentation and on exploring the principles of images making and story telling. For the Biennale, he investigates the ability of a model to become a fiction and an archive, before the actual construction of the building. The artist begins with the surprising speculation that has developed on the Internet concerning architectural projects planned in Algeria which are unfinished due to long term delays. 3D models of the projects, official or not, combined with other buildings under construction abroad, form a visual archive, both real, fantasy, and even imaginary. Selmani formalizes this speculative process with an elaborate fictional archive of African based projects, without reveling their contexts. Aiming to deconstruct the architect’s table, the final three models have been placed on sculpture stands or hung on the wall and reference these evolving stories. Selmani juxtaposes and superimposes autonomous fragments – 3D prints, fictitious promotional packages and drawings – on tracing paper or plexiglass that form a counterpoint everyone can decipher.