Maraya Art Foundation, UAE Unlimited 2019 Fellowship, March-August 2019

Spectrum, 2018, 124 x 240 x 55 cm 156 transformed soaps poured as ingots into a soap plate


I gathered 156 kinds of soap that are available in the UAE and transformed them, changing the shape, color, and smell of the different varieties through a process of shredding, melting, and casting them into identical molds. I designed a questionnaire and tracked people‚Äôs responses to the varieties, creating a qualitative data set to coincide with the quantitative characteristics such as chemical-olfactory composition, origin, and distribution. The commercial identifiers have been lost and each soap-ingot is transformed into a kind of blueprint full of data to be read collectively across the full spectrum of soaps through their own imperfections and surface texture that developed through the identical molding process. They read as a type of visual archive of the memory and personal ritual through an everyday medium that is tied to the personal experience of cleansing.