Dialogical Intimacy

By Kisito Assangni - Wednesday, February 15, 2023
Dialogical Intimacy

Aïda Patricia Schweitzer develops a critique of the body as an artistic tool and site of representation, thought as a scenario resulting from precise human decisions, through a heterogeneous artistic practice that crosses performance, painting, drawing, embroidery, installation and video.

Aïda Patricia Schweitzer develops a critique of the body as an artistic tool and site of representation, thought as a scenario resulting from precise human decisions, through a heterogeneous artistic practice that crosses performance, painting, drawing, embroidery, installation and video. Aïda Schweitzer is a self-taught artist of Egyptian and French origins living in Luxembourg. Since 2000, her research-based practice has been centered on a strong art consciousness and self-revolutionary introspection via travel and nomadism between Europe and Africa. Aïda Schweitzer questions the daily order with a rebellious attitude, so as to repeatedly scrutinize and explore the reality of the world, these continuous analysis are reflected through the composure of her works.

Honorer l'héritage ancestral (Honoring the ancestral heritage, Embroidery on a Muslim funeral cotton shroud, Luxembourg, Installation, 2022 // photo credit Anna Krieps

Responsive to its particular context, the art of Aïda Schweitzer explores the relationship between personal and political space, carving openings for dialogue regarding history, identity, socio-political systems of external and internal oppression, and categorization that enmesh individuals. Her creation motive involves long-term accumulated experiences from different cultures and heritages. Aïda Schweitzer reminds us that the human body is constantly engaging with and sometimes colliding with other living and non-living bodies. Bodies exist in a social context amid collective bodies and collective selves. The evacuation of the artist and conventional conceptions of the self and the body are even more prescient today in a world of such profound uncertainty.

La marche des princesses rebelles (March of the Rebel Princesses), Nancy France, Performance, 2022 // photo credit Emmanuelle Potier

Aïda Schweitzer makes her own body the material and protagonist of her performances. As a form of social sculpture, performance art is a medium that holds a special place in her heart. It does not comply with usual aesthetic parameters, but rather with a set of forces that collectively form an experience. Nicolas Bourriaud would call this 'relational aesthetics' in the sense that the inter-relations of the encounters created between the subjected body and the participants are the performative work. Aïda Schweitzer approaches the vehicle of performance to think in the plural and no longer in terms of individuality, creating poetic and trans-historical narratives. 

On the occasion of the 59th Venice Biennale 2022, Aïda Schweitzer was invited to speak on the question How can art fix the world ?  at the Pavilion of San Marino.

Her answer published in the catalogue of The Milky Way project undeniably demonstrates the capacity of art to heal our wounds through its political role of raising awareness in the face of a dominant ideology.

Drawing is an integral aspect to the artist’s thinking, creative practice, providing evidence of lingering materiality. Drawing is a place where Aïda Schweitzer deliberates. More than any other medium, drawing reveals her intimate thoughts and workings, shaping her personal life story. With drawing, we can see both the finished product and the ideas, but most importantly, we can see the haptic experience of making lines on paper and always, we see it is the thinking hand that remains dominant. Even if drawing as a structural and conceptual necessity exists irrespective of cultural identity, it is seen to occupy a position of critical ascendancy in Aïda Schweitzer's world. With a material presence and labour intensive realisation, her drawings are a healing process and a reaction against the fleeting experience of images prevalent in our media saturated existence. 

Femmes guerrières, femmes au combat (Women warriors, women in combat), Paris, Performance, 2022  // photo credit Jean-Noël Martin

Always willing to forge her own path in terms of stylistic development and social intervention, Aïda Schweitzer's videos focus on the relationships between visual language and other sensorial perceptions, forming a unique sample that is closer to her personal temperament. This, to a large extent, has enhanced her sensitivity to such singular aesthetics and prompted her to discover their contemporary iterations. The artist challenges the determinacy of our existential value while expanding its boundaries. Often referring to the allure and danger of binary categorization and the subsequent absurdity that it unfolds in our political and social climate, her other practices reveal the discrepancies amongst cultural norms, produce new semantics and find sense where meaning was lost.

Aïda Schweitzer's visual language offers a thoughtful and thought-provoking response to the current moment by manifesting  itself in a concise form to create direct emotional impacts. Psychological space can be made to coexist with pictorial space, enabling a personal revision of history. Ultimately, Aïda Schweitzer's work can be used to illustrate the notions of contemporary ‘performativity’, given the artist’s ability to re-think and displace visual spectacle toward a conception of the body as the limit of signification.

Métissage (Crossbreeding), Metz France, Textile sculpture, 2021 // Photo credit Vivianne Zenner

Since 2009, Aïda Schweitzer has shown her work in solo and group exhibitions, notably at the Nosbaum Reding Project Gallery in Luxembourg and at the Casino Luxembourg – Forum of contemporary art in Luxembourg.

She joined the project (in)VISIBLE - (un)SICHTBAR TOTAL THEATRE - Saarbrücken, Luxembourg, Liege, Thionville - with the German artists Angie Hiels and Roland Kayser artists, choreographers and performers.

She was invited to participate in a performance at the Venice Biennale in 2017 by artist Jelili Atiku from Nigeria, an experience that strengthened her ties to Africa.

She participated in the group exhibition Women Warriors, Women in Combat curated by Isabelle de Maison Rouge.

The artist has been selected for a focus on the Luxembourg scene by the independent curator Marianne Derrien in November 2022.

Kisito Assangni is a Togolese-French curator, art consultant, and farmer who studied museology at Ecole du Louvre in Paris. Currently living between UK, France and Togo, his research focuses primarily on psychogeography and the cultural impact of globalisation. He investigates the modes of cultural production that combine theory and practice. He inherently aims at going beyond the usual relations between artist, curator, institution, audience, and artwork in order to engage audiences in encounters with art that are unexpected, transformative, and fun. His discursive public programs and exhibitions have been shown internationally, including the Venice Biennale; ZKM Museum, Karlsruhe; Whitechapel Gallery, London; Centre of Contemporary Art, Glasgow; Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney; Malmo Konsthall, Sweden; Torrance Art Museum, Los Angeles; Es Baluard Museum of Art, Palma, Spain; National Centre for Contemporary Arts, Moscow; Marrakech Biennale among others. Assangni has participated in talks, seminars, and symposia at numerous institutions such as the British Museum, London; Palais de Tokyo, Paris; Smithsonian Institution, Washington DC; Ben Uri Museum, London; Pori Art Museum, Finland; Kunsthall 3.14, Bergen (Norway); Bamako Encounters Photography Biennial, Mali; Sala Rekalde Foundation, Bilbao; COP17 Summit, South Africa; Depart Foundation, Malibu (USA); Sint-Lukas University, Brussels; Motorenhalle Centre of Contemporary Art, Dresden (Germany); Kunsthalle Sao Paulo, Brazil; Museo d’Arte Contemporanea Ticino, Switzerland. Assangni is the founder of TIME is Love Screening (International video art program) and art advisor for Latrobe Regional Gallery in Victoria, Australia.

ArtDependence WhatsApp Group

Get the latest ArtDependence updates directly in WhatsApp by joining the ArtDependence WhatsApp Group by clicking the link or scanning the QR code below


Subscribe to the Newsletter

Image of the Day

Anna Melnykova, "Palace of Labor (palats praci), architector I. Pretro, 1916", shot with analog Canon camera, 35 mm Fuji film in March 2022.

Anna Melnykova, "Palace of Labor (palats praci), architector I. Pretro, 1916", shot with analog Canon camera, 35 mm Fuji film in March 2022.


About ArtDependence

ArtDependence Magazine is an international magazine covering all spheres of contemporary art, as well as modern and classical art.

ArtDependence features the latest art news, highlighting interviews with today’s most influential artists, galleries, curators, collectors, fair directors and individuals at the axis of the arts.

The magazine also covers series of articles and reviews on critical art events, new publications and other foremost happenings in the art world.

If you would like to submit events or editorial content to ArtDependence Magazine, please feel free to reach the magazine via the contact page.