Through miniaturization, abstraction, exploded views, and the use of fragile materials, Rehab El Sadek uses architectural structures, light, and shadow to investigate the layered reality of immigrants from different backgrounds in America. Employing floating houses, towering structures and compressed drawings, El Sadek uses perspective to change our perception and invites viewers to think about culture, communication, and language.
To create the architecture-inspired sculptural forms of Pattern Language, El Sadek has repurposed common household objects such as shelves, food containers, packing material, meat skewers, and a colander. One repurposed item with special historical significance in this exhibition is a door that previously served as the entry to the gallery in the early 20th century when the space served the neighborhood as a corner grocery store. In more recent years, the building was occupied by a landscape design firm, inspiring installations that blur the line between the gallery interior and the outside world.
About the Artist
An Egyptian-born artist of Sudanese ancestry, Rehab El Sadek, is a conceptual artist whose work has been widely exhibited internationally in the UK, Ireland, Netherlands, Italy, Germany, Austria, Spain, Turkey, UAE, Lebanon, Pakistan, Kenya, Algeria, Mali, Egypt, and Canada. In 2009, El Sadek was one of 88 female artists included in REBELLE: Art and Feminism 1969-2009–an extensive forty-year survey of feminist artwork organized by the Museum voor Moderne Kunst in Arnhem that included artists such as Louise Bourgeois and Yayoi Kusama.
El Sadek has been the recipient of numerous grants and awards. Recent awards include: The Gottlieb Foundation Individual Grant, NY; Sustainable Arts Foundation Award; Texas Vignette Artist Grant; a MacDowell artist residency supported by the Pollock-Krasner Foundation and the Carnegie Corporation Fellowship ; and Red Bull Arts Microgrant. She also held a one-year appointment as the City of Austin’s first Artist-in-Residence 2017, embedded in the City’s Watershed Protection Department.