HE

Rebels, by militia hideout, from the series ‘Anton’s hand is made of guilt, no muscle or bone. He has two clinically depressed fingers and an angry thumb’ | Edgar Martins

Curator: Maya Anner

Edgar Martins
United Kingdom / Portugal
Rebels, by militia hideout, from the series ‘Anton’s hand is made of guilt, no muscle or bone. He has two clinically depressed fingers and an angry thumb’
2023

Edgar Martins employs a meta-representational approach to photography, introducing the concept of ‘the impossible document’ as termed by the artist. His work contributes to a visual lexicon used to critically examine modes of representing conflict in photojournalism, and often blurs the line between fiction and reality.

Produced in Libya, North Africa, and the UK over three years, this project is grounded in a speculative investigation considering the disappearance and subsequent death of Martins’ close friend photojournalist Anton Hammerl, during the 2011 Libyan war, whose remains are missing to this day.

By retracing Anton’s steps – the places he visited and where he met his end – and engaging with diverse individuals affected by the conflict, including combatants, rebels, freedom fighters, Gaddafi loyalists, civilians, and Libyan dissidents in hiding, Martins could step into his late friend’s shoes, if only momentarily. The result is a portrayal of a complex story warped by absence, addressing the difficulty of documenting, witnessing, remembering and imagining war.

In collaboration with Embassy of Portugal

 

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