Self Portrait, 2016

Photo: Dávid Tóth | Courtesy Kortárs Művészeti Galéria
Photo: Photo: Imagen Subliminal (Rocío Romero + Miguel de Guzman)

Acrylic on tinplate
30 x 30 x 1 cm

My family has depended on converting metal waste into a resource to support the well-being of my family. After being trained in painting - I chose metal waste as my artistic medium in order to question the perceived value and relations between metal waste, technology and art.
Pursuing further research into the matter, I learned that all the metals on the surface of the Earth today emerged from apocalyptic meteor showers 200 million years ago. Every human tool comprised of metals today - from forks to phones - emerged from collisions and chemical reactions that would have wiped out the entire species.

By painting on metal and working with my family to explore its material, social and possibilities - I couple contemporary art’s conceptual tools with the etymological origins of material invention in the word ‘art’.

I have always had a very personal relationship with metal as my family and I have been collecting and recycling it to sustain ourselves since my childhood. My latest paintings on scrap metal portray impressions of everyday life, references to art history and text collages. Humor, wordplay and my incessant probing of the boundaries of art fuse painting and sculpture into small intimate objects. – Selma Selman
Selma Selman (b.1991) is from Bosnia and Herzegovina and is of Romani origin. She earned her Bachelor of Fine Arts in 2014 from Banja Luka University’s Department of Painting. In 2018, she graduated from Syracuse University with a Master of Fine Arts in Transmedia, Visual, and Performing Arts. 

In her artworks, the ultimate aim is to protect and enable female bodies and enact a cross-scalar approach to the collective self-emancipation of oppressed women. Selma’s search for functional, contemporary political resistance stems from her experience with oppression from various directions and scales. Selman also founded ”Get The Heck To School,” which aims to empower Roma girls worldwide who faced ostracization from society and poverty. 

Selma Selman lives and works in Bihac, BIH, and New York, USA.