The work of Swedish-Lebanese visual artist Sara Badr Schmidt is a continuing exercise in overturning barriers, whether geographic, cultural or artistic. As she juggles painting, collage, photography, video and printing on canvas, she teases the limits of art and design -- without embarrassment, but not without humor.

Badr Schmidt’s work was first shown in Beirut (Circuit Invisible, 1999 and I Want, Strange Fruit, 2002). Returning to Paris, in 2006 she participated in the Artcurial group exhibit, Mickey dans tous ses états, with her piece, Unframed. In spring 2008, she launched her first solo Paris show, Renaissance, at the Galerie Langlet and was subsequently invited to participate in the Parcours Saint-Germain exhibition, based on the theme, Once Upon A Time.
In each of her solo shows, Sara Badr Schmidt treats spatial design as a work in its own right, an ephemeral creation. She leads the visitor into her universe and allows him to make each piece his own, whether physically, by coming close to the work to listen to a headset hung next to a canvas, or intellectually, by creating meaning from what he sees and feels. Sara Badr Schmidt’s works never impose a single meaning. Rather, they favor questions to provocation and irony to mockery. Her Toiles de maître au mètre (masterworks by the meter) are sold by the roll, as they would be at a textile market.

Whether canvases or light boxes, photographs or video montages, her more recent works tell stories that straddle the borders among worlds. Even the words – whether enigmatic charades or the first sentence of a plot – never explain but, rather, heighten the sense of mystery.

Sara Badr Schmidt

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