Witten by: Mahasin Ismail
It’s astonishing how our hands and fingers can move in different directions creating so many shapes and expressive forms. The tiny bones, ligaments and tendons along veins and stretchy skin are just magnificent. You’ll be dazzled by how much we can say using our hands and its gestures through Hashim Nasr’s conceptual artworks of photography.
Hashim is a 32 years old dentist and visual artist. Born and raised in Khartoum, his current focus is on fine art photography and installation creating a conceptual practice that blends minimalism with abstraction. Hashim never set out to be an artist, but when he found beauty in hands and the shapes they could generate, he jumped straight from science to art. In his recent project “Locked Out Of Space-time” where he depicted a shirtless man laying down in sand with his head hidden into sugar cane fields, he challenged convention and examined new methodologies to create art and meaning by finding basis in conceptualism.
His artistic practice elicits conflicting emotions of desire and revulsion, fear and fascination, think of love and vulnerability. A key element throughout his work is the relationship between image, language and art. You can’t look at his work without referring to his continuous developing effort through which he succeeded to produce complex yet drastically simplified bodies of artworks playing with shadows to highlight spirituality, hope, and nostalgia.
Where many conceptual artists were only interested in the concept and aimed to dematerialize their artworks, Hashim was interested in both the idea and the material quality of the artwork. He took photography in an innovative manner, influenced by the brutal simplicity of minimalism to create radical and groundbreaking conceptual performance in myriad forms. Inspired by hands using them as potential viewpoints to transform certain popular topics into authentic conceptual artworks that are as striking as drawings. Hashim explores the realm of the politics of the body and the ever shifting relations to culture, society and the environment. He is one of the first Sudanese artists to use his own body as an artistic medium to challenge the viewer to engage, participate or question invisible structure rejecting the standards of usual in a quest for liberation.
“Mostly I love how black and white directly guide you to the core of the meaning of the photograph and make you THINK AND FEEL. Although I believe conceptual photographs don’t necessarily tell you the exact meaning of what you see.
When we asked Hashim about his artworks he stated :
I remember being enchanted by pop music, accompanied by the appearance of Lady Gaga for the first time back then, which enriched my visual background and led me to dive more into the surreal and conceptual art world.
Then I started photography during my college period, taking landscape shots with my middle quality phone, but it wasn’t a serious attempt until the hectic nightmare summer of 2020. During Covid quarantine, I found myself inspired and deeply connected with my inner self like I have never been before to the point that makes me look for ways to express my ideas through photography. Yet, I faced some difficulties including having no models to shoot sessions with, and I lacked the self-esteem to act as a model myself, therefore I used my hands as the easy accessible object around me, then later discovered their ability of sending different emotions & motives. From that period I started my journey with conceptual art depending only on my phone camera and natural sunlight coming from my window to shoot different projects.
He also answered; “How does your work as a Dentist influence your conceptual artworks?”
Being a dentist for almost 6 years professionally after graduation has in fact impacted my constant eagerness to perfectionism. I think dealing with my visions of art and ideas is the same as dealing with people’s lives, stressful yet always challenging and exciting to change someone’s life for better.
He is best known for his multidisciplinary practice incorporating various mediums in his artworks including mirrors, flowers, fabric materials and other daily domestic objects to recall motifs to give a sense of totality. During his last project “Ecstasy”, he built upon a narrative of emotional reflection, resulting in futuristic effects that’s completely original in style. By doing so, Hashim contributed to the development of conceptual art in Sudan, my personal forecast tells that he’s ready to take the world by the storm.
Mahasin is a widely sociable outdoorsy 21 years old art blogger who is driven by curiosity and fascinated by (People) . Fangirling over art, American politics, and hospitality industry, maybe an entrepreneur, in an open journey quest for meaning of Home.