From Napoleon to Daesh, 2018

Graduation show rMA Artistic Research at UvA University of Amsterdam

 

In 2015, Daesh uploaded videos on the internet, showing its shattering of sculptures in the Mosul museum, dynamiting of the ancient city of Palmyra, demolishing an Akkadian Lamassu sculpture with a drill hammer and other actions of destruction of ancient cultural heritage. The outrage following this action was enormous. Although the destruction of artifacts and its looting, is as old as the artifacts themselves. However, looting in this area expanded since Napoleon's campaigns in Egypt and neighbouring countries. French and British (among others) governments took objects from this area under shady circumstances or in an illegal way, and shipped them to Europe. In both situations, the artifacts were are no longer intact and in their original place. But what kind of relationship do these actions have to each other? Can this colonial excavating, looting and destruction be related to contemporary demolishing of ancient artifacts (by Daesh)? From Napoleon to Daesh Through Art, is a critical research on the colonial debris in our contemporary world.

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