Yto Barrada

In The Magician (2003), a private display of illusions is presented in the courtyard of Mr El Hamri’s house in Tangier, including the apparition of ping-pong balls and white doves, swallowing razor blades, and an attempt to reproduce his difficult trick ‘How to Make a Chicken Go to Sleep (El sueno de un gallo)’.

"The hands of the magician are faster than the eyes of the spectator."

Abdelouahid El Hamri, aka Sinbad of the Straits.

Born in 1971, Yto Barrada grew up between Paris and Tangier, Morocco. She studied history and political science at the Sorbonne, and photography at the International Center of Photography in New York. Recent exhibitions of her work include the Fowler Museum, Los Angeles; the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; the Museum of Modern Art, New York; and the Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris. Since 2006, Barrada has been the director and co-founder of the Cinémathèque de Tanger in Morocco. Her 2011 exhibitions – of photography, film, publications, prints and sculptures – include her artist-of-the-year show at the Deutsche Guggenheim, Berlin, and the 54th Venice Biennale where her work will be shown as part of curator Bice Curiger’s ILLUMInations exhibition and at the Pinault Foundation in the Palazzo Grassi. Yto Barrada is represented by Galerie Polaris, Paris and Galerie Sfeir Semler, Hamburg & Beirut.

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