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Ellie Ga: Square Octagon Circle
In the murky waters of the Mediterranean lie the ruins of Alexandria’s fabled lighthouse, a wonder of the ancient world destroyed by earthquakes in the Middle Ages. While mapped by archeologists, most of these 2,000 stone remnants will never be retrieved and reconstructed: the Pharos Lighthouse can only be inferred. But above the surface, the lighthouse is ubiquitous in the modern city, its image wholly imagined, with little resemblance to the stones at the bottom of the sea.
In a richly braided, intimately told narrative of text and image, New York–born artist and writer Ellie Ga (born 1976) takes the reader with her on dive boats and into the water, behind the walls of hidden museums, through city streets pasted with political graffiti, into the offices of archeologists and the homes of Alexandrians—just as Egypt is on the cusp of its first post-revolution election. Ga’s investigations into the lighthouse chart the charged spaces between the historical and mythological, between the translated and untranslatable, between the unearthing of memory, the circumscription of the past and the potential of the present. Ga’s subject is ostensibly the Pharos Lighthouse, but her own gorgeously constructed palimpsests reveal a multitude of possible truths: Square Octagon Circle becomes a prism through which to see the nature of the unknown.
Featured image is reproduced from 'Ellie Ga: Square Octagon Circle.'
PRAISE AND REVIEWS
Any moment in Square Octogon Circle has the potential to be a beacon foretelling and prompting Ga's next move.
Square Octagon Circle draws from a larger body of work created during the artist’s exploration of the Pharos Lighthouse and its submerged remains on a seabed off the Mediterranean coast.
The Brooklyn Rail
Lee Ann Norman
A winding journey of discovery between the slippery spaces of memory and history, mythology and fact, language and communication, and what is hidden and subsequently revealed.
Los Angeles Review of Books
'Square Octagon Circle' draws on both science and mythology to create a multilayered contemplation of the seen and the unseen, knowledge and the unknown.
Max L. Feldman
Ellie Ga’s book 'Square Octagon Circle'... draws on and completes her 14-piece multimedia project of the same name, which includes performances, videos, prints, drawings, sculptures, and slide projection shows, with one clear aim: to find out what the Lighthouse of Alexandria, one of the long-lost seven wonders of the world, truly looked like.
Anna Della Subin
An exquisitely layered excavation of the sunken lighthouse and her own Egyptian quest
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FROM THE ARTBOOK BLOG
CORY REYNOLDS | DATE 9/20/2018
Featured image is reproduced from Ellie Ga: Square Octagon Circle, the lyrical new release and NY Art Book Fair favorite from Siglio. "Opening the layered die-cuts that make up the book’s cover feels like diving," NYABF Fairs and Editions coordinator Emmy Catedral writes in BOMB. "Each spread: text on photograph, full bleed. I find myself in a sequence of underwater backgrounds in varying stages of lucidity. One could go through the book in a single sitting, but my favorite part of this object is that I can surface, linger with a line, dive back underwater, revisit Ga’s well-used Egyptology books with page flags spilling at the edges. There are transcriptions of recorded conversations with archeologists, silversmiths, and filmmakers, as well as a memorable recounting of a visit to a secretive Department of Drowned Antiquities." continue to blog
UGLY DUCKLING PRESSE
USD $25.00 | CAN $34.5 UK £ 22
Pub Date: 11/20/2018
Active | In stock
USD $36.00 | CAN $47.5 UK £ 32
Pub Date: 9/25/2018
Active | In stock