Babi the artist addresses the geopolitical issues that echo his own experiences and impressions from migrating and travelling - words, drawings, photos, fabrics, shirts, shoes, paper, collages, walls, rubbish are merged, shakered, and transformed into a new artistic product. The world is in it: people and slogans, discrimination and propaganda, languages, and alphabets, his mother’s death, the nostalgia of the village of Lerik, art history, his detention in the UK, his sexual identity, his image and that of others, abuses and excesses of power all over the planet are put in words and visuals.
Art is his dialogue with the world outside his tiny studio - it is also all he needs in his world.
"There are days when I do not talk. To anyone. Maybe just to the baker," smiles Babi. Or the Algerian brothers.
His neighbourhood is simple, modest, chaotic, diverse and “full of real people,” he notes. Socially and culturally it reminds him of Lerik, the hometown he cannot return to, and it serves as a bridge between the poverty of his childhood and his life today, as he still owns almost nothing.
“This place, these people are unquenchable sources of inspiration for me as an artist," he notes.
In Barbès, Babi has found his home away from home.