Arts

Kader Attia: Reason's Oxymorons

When: Mondays, Wednesdays-Sundays, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Continues through Jan. 8, 2018

Human beings' adaptability is what allows people to gradually come to terms with catastrophic change and trauma. In the Western world, we consider it possible for someone who has experienced a tragedy to "heal," thereby erasing a wrong. But the non-Western world doesn't always believe that disaster can be plastered over. In some countries, the scars and imperfections are celebrated. These conflicting ideas of past damage are the inspiration for French-Algerian artist Kader Attia's exhibition Reason's Oxymorons. Attia interviewed and filmed historians, storytellers, philosophers and ethnographers from around the world discussing their cultural ideas of healing psychic damage. These films are then continuously played on an array of televisions placed throughout a maze of gray cubicles. The viewer can pass from cube to cube, gaining exposure to previously foreign worldviews. Kader Attia: Reason's Oxymorons opens with a free public reception from 7 to 9 p.m. tonight at the Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum on the Washington University campus (1 Brookings Drive; www.kemperartmuseum.wustl.edu). The show remains up through January 8, and the museum is open every day except Tuesday.

Paul Friswold

Price: free admission