Walid Raad: Walkthrough

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*Section 88_Act XXXI: Views from outer to inner compartments*

Walid Raad. Section 88_Act XXXI: Views from outer to inner compartments. 2015 289000

Walid Raad. Section 88_Act XXXI: Views from outer to inner compartments. 2015. Wood, 16′ 4 13/16″ × 8′ 7/16″ × 7 7/8″ (500 × 250 × 20 cm). Courtesy the artist and Sfeir-Semler Gallery, Beirut/Hamburg

Walid Raad: The Guggenheim Abu Dhabi, the one I was mentioning a few minutes ago, it's going to open on August 16, 2017.

We are August 16, 2017. The Guggenheim has just opened its doors.

A proud Emirati resident rushes the entrance of the museum in order to get in, but he stops. He can't get in. Why can't he get in? Is it because he's dressed in a black t-shirt and jeans, and this is a black tie affair? Does he feel underdressed, is this why he does not go in? No.

Oh, it must be the thugs, it must be the security services who are shielding the ruling dynasty, a ruling class attending en masse the event to showcase its benevolence and refined sensibility with pubescent future rulers in tow. Is it the thugs that prevent him from entering? No.

He simply feels that were he to walk in, he would certainly hit a wall, literally hit a wall.

On the spot, he turns to face the onrushing crowd and screams, “Stop, don't go in, be careful!”

Within seconds, the security services arrive, they beat him severely, they handcuff him, and they sent him to a psychiatric facility.

The very next day, open the newspaper, right here, turn to page six, bottom right-hand corner, and read the headline: “Demented Man Disturbs Opening, Claims World is Flat.”

This event has already happened, this headline has already been written. About this, I'm absolutely certain.