Mario Merz Prize

Edition 2


Suha Traboulsi

Suha Traboulsi (Freetown, Sierra Leone 1969) lives and works in Ascona, Switzerland.

Defying classification, Suha Traboulsi’s fierce individualism informed her enigmatic and highly acclaimed body of work. Her astonishing diverse works of the past 25 years are amongst the most compelling images of late twentieth and early twenty first century art.
Her first stage, her theopathic period, was between 1982 and 1991. This was the time she spent traveling between Andalusia and Persia, experimenting with forms, techniques, and materials. The second period of her career reflected the influence of Lucia Fa Jolt, the Persian philosopher of the Imaginal. It was during this period that she witnessed the great religious festivals that have been celebrated since the ancient periods. She began to associate the intuitive aspect of art with the essential element in the popular magical art of the hidden and the unknown.

In 1994, Suha Traboulsi began constructing her multi-layered, complex wall-relief sculptures. These three-dimensional constructs use a pioneering technique of stretching fragments of recycled organic forms of great depth. This technique created unusual depth, forming what she refers to as “the mysterious passions.” The technical handling of her chosen materials stemmed from her early career as a molecular editor. Both her parents were skilled technicians – her mother working in a World War II submarine factory wiring transmitters and her father having invented the first chemical database.