Doodles: politics and art (a book developed from a selection of doodles produced by Edi Rama between 2000 and 2012).
It is uncertain if Edi Rama's doodles are the fruit of close attention or daydreaming. Made on printouts of his daily agenda, office notes, protocols, faxes, and other official correspondence, the drawings are like a stream of lava, loosely binding the day-to-day grind. While Rama's mind focuses on the political context of the discussion, his eyes are focused on the paper, following his hand that draws, like a spiritual medium, his inner experience. Anri Sala compares and contrasts the doodles within the context of Rama's background. Opposite Rama's doodles, Sala places headlines of concurrent daily news from Albanian and international papers, covering political, social, and other events of different impact, i.e. local, Albanian, European, international, and sometimes universal. The headlines zoom in and out from global to local and vice-versa, sometimes followed by excerpts from Aleksandr Rodchenko's journal "Experiments For The Future," which remind us, with their enthusiastic or pessimistic perspective on the world 80 years ago, of more distant day-to-day concerns and hopes.
In the “Creating Space Where Appears To Be None/Inversion” drawing series, Anri Sala starts from Rama's drawings to develop his own counterpoint. He filters the colors, forms, and lines using dissolver solutions to crystallize and transfer them into new drawings, which echo those of Rama while mirroring them. The drawings are accompanied by four one-to-one conversations between Edi Rama and Michael Fried, Philippe Parreno
, Marcus Steinweg, and Erion Veliaj.
Edi Rama (born 1964 in Tirana) is an artist and politician from Albania who, following the collapse of Communism, became involved with the first democratic movements. He left Albania for France in 1994 and lived there as an artist, participating in different exhibitions and biennales. He returned to Albania in 1998 and became Minister of Culture, Youth, and Sports from 1998 to 2000, and Mayor of Tirana from 2000 to 2011. Since 2005 Rama has been the leader of the Socialist Party of Albania—the largest party in Albania—and head of the opposition.