Babi Badalov

Born 1959, Lerik, Azerbaijan. In the 1980s, he moved to Leningrad where he discovered an alternative Russian art scene. In 1990, he participated in the exhibition “New St. Petersburg artists” at gallery Műcsarnok (Budapest), and the following year he held his first solo exhibition in Oregon. Travelling and a migrant status in the United States of America and the United Kingdom became one of the themes of his artistic practice.

As a visual artist, poet he expresses his ideas through visual poetry, art objects, installations and live performances. He also experiments with words and writes obscure poetry, mixing languages and images of different cultures. Babi Badalov’s work often is dedicated to linguistic explorations researching the limits of language and the borders it imposes upon its users and based on his personal experience of linguistic inconveniences while travelling. In foreign countries, we often come across words written in the same alphabet as ours, but with different meaning, sound or pronunciation. His visual poetry often takes the form of a diary, created every day through a combination of his own linguistic research of manipulated pictorial material, mainly with political content. The nomad life of an artist (or traveler, migrant, refugee) does not only cause him or her a struggling adaptation period of cultural integration, but can primarily turn him or her into a prisoner of language. Badalov’s projects play with this kind of linguistic notions in order to emphasize larger geo-political questions.

Babi Badalov’s “Visual Poetry” was presented at 11th Gwangju biennial (2016), at the Moscow Biennial of Contemporary Art (2015), at Manifesta 8 (2010). His solo exhibitions include such projects as To Make Art To Take Clothes Off at MUSAC – museum cont. art Leon, Spain (2017), For the Wall For the World at Palais de Tokyo, Paris (2016), Partisanism at Tensta Konsthall, Stokholm (2016), MIGRANT POETRY at La Station, Nice, France (2015).

He has lived and worked in Paris since 2008.