Salim Bayri (b. 1992) surrounds himself with an alter ego that he calls Sad Ali, a shortening of ‘sad alien’. This cartoonlike figure has no organs, undertakes no actions and opposite to a cartoon personality he doesn’t talk. As a kind of ambulant search machine he runs around checking out situations and things.
Basically the work of Salim Bayri is about letting the eye jump over from one pictorial stone to another. In case an attraction occurs it is a matter of scanning, holding and making. In that sense his art is a compilation of objects and stories that in several titles is defined as ‘storage’. Nevertheless it is not only about that; in a recent installation ”Sandwich break” (2018) he addresses the reality of artefacts (cardboard objects) versus a documented film moment becoming part of reality. He says: ‘I like to check when there are dead moments. By showing this I may find out where the real action is.’
In his texts Bayri is more analytical and contemplative. There he tells about situations he runs into while moving around in The Netherlands. At this stage he combines his films with narratives on what struck his eye. His films, drawings, prints and wearables stimulate to contemplate on semi-social political themes he has contextualised in a soft-absurdist way.
Salim Bayri is one of the participating artists of Drawing Stories (2020) curated by Framer Framed and presented as part of the online exhibition Corona in the City, organised by Amsterdam Museum.