Saâdane Afif draws from the fields of both art and music in order to critically explore the notions of interpretation, collaboration and translation. His installations, which include light, sound, pictures, texts and sculptural elements (often in the form of manipulated musical instruments and appliances), are often accompanied by a complex reflection on authorship.
For example, in Black Cords (2007), his contribution to documenta 12, Afif arranged thirteen black guitars with automatons and amplifiers in a darkened room, programming the automatons to play each of the guitars at alternating intervals. The investigation of authorship is also present in Lyrics, a project that begun in 2004 when Afif commissioned writers to produce lyrics based on his artworks. The lyrics became wall texts, and afterwards musicians were commissioned to create music for them. Lyrics was first shown at Palais de Tokyo, Paris, France in 2005. For the exhibition Technical Specifications at Witte de With, Rotterdam, the Netherlands, Afif reworked for the first time his own sculptures and installations.
Afif's solo exhibition includes Technical specifications at Witte de With, Rotterdam, the Netherlands (2008), One, at FRAC Pays de Loire, Carquefou, France, Two…, FRAC Basse-Normandie, Caen, France (2008). He has also participated in numerous group exhibitions, such as Pop! goes the weasel at Badischer Kunstverein, Karlsruhe, Germany (2007), documenta 12, Kassel, Germany (2007), Learn to Read at Tate Modern, London, UK (2007) and Airs de Paris at Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris, France (2007).
Saâdane Afif's residency was made possible with funds from the Norwegian Ministry of Culture and by additional support from Culturesfrance.