Like Moths to a Flame is a subtle yet insistent intervention in Wadi Hanifa, projected onto one of the park’s Brutalist-seeming walls. The lawn of the park is scattered with families picnicking; sometimes on camping furniture, but mostly seated on picnic blankets on the floor. These small clusters of families and friends in public space are akin to how they would gather in the living room of the home. The piece brings in architectural elements of a formal living room in order to lean into this resemblance and juxtapose it with the informal gatherings of the park. Like Moths to a Flame was originally inspired by the central positioning of chandeliers in domestic spaces. Just like the moth’s obsession with the light, society’s obsession with crowning their salons and entryways suggests that humans also possess a gravitational pull towards energy sources. Is this why we gather and sit around chandeliers? What is the true importance and power of this object? Romman frequently explores the social, cultural, historical, and political contexts that underlie our aesthetic choices. With Like Moths to a Flame, Romman will be introducing a new force to the mix – an instinctive, almost outer-body pull.
Like Moths to a Flame, 2023 © Ibrahim Romman
Commissioned by RCRC and Riyadh Art