Aptly titled Compressed, this sculpture series portrays Syrian detainees through the bars of their prison cells. In one of the three pieces that constitute this series, a prisoner is held in what is ostensibly solitary confinement. Another sculpture depicts two prisoners huddled together, while the third conveys a dense mass of bodies and a tangle of arms, legs, and feet. Although each of the three cells appear to hold a different number of prisoners, the theme that reoccurs in every sculpture is an oppressive, suffocating lack of space, and the absolute restriction such places upon mobility and movement.
In a text composed as part of Compressed, the artist writes:
In this square, I no longer have any contours of my own.
The bodies of the others are mine.
A hand moves, perhaps it's mine, perhaps it’s his or hers, perhaps it’s ours…
Khaled Dawa, sculpteur syrien en exil | ARTE Info 2016