In the Darkroom with Steve Sabella

by Nadia Johanne Kabalan

2014 | Documentary Short | 15 min

The interview-based short film explores the creation process of recent works by the Jerusalem-born artist Steve Sabella. Having witnessed the construction of the Separation Wall in Palestine, Steve shares his views on the entanglements between art and politics that influence his work, which is characterised by fluidity, ongoing renewal and conversion. While the series Metamorphosis (2012) reveals the artist’s transformation after an internal and external conflict rooted in his experience of occupation, 38 days of re-collection (2013-2014) documents the excavation of a forgotten and re-imagined history of Jerusalem.

By exploring a fragmented material history and reality, Steve seeks a visual language of his own that transcends restrictions and challenges borders. The film accompanies the artist in the darkroom, the space that brings images and imagination to life. “When you are in the darkroom, you don’t speak with anyone. The only thing you speak with is … art.”

This is a student work that was developed within the framework of a film seminar at Freie Universität Berlin, Institute for Arthistory.