Najjat Makki

Bio:
From the sounds of the sea, the rhythm of people, the colours of the Gulf and the mystery of the abaya, Najat Makki for as long as she can remember, has been drawn by her senses and emotions to depict the nuances of her environment. As the first Emirati woman to receive a government scholarship to study art aboard, she travelled to the College of Fine Arts in Cairo in 1977 where she obtained her BA and MA degrees in relief sculptures and metalwork. Later, in 2001 she received a PhD.  

Statement:

Often celebrated for her early work in which she used symbols of Emirati culture and heritage, such as saffron and henna.  Makki’s later work becomes more abstract. She has passed through several stylistic phases, including realism and abstract expressionism. She has developed a technique inspired by modernism and is related to both her local environment and the human condition. Often known for her focus on the female figure and symbols, in recent years she has created more abstract, layered paintings, distinguishing herself from her peers. She has won numerous awards throughout her career, including the National Award for Arts, Sciences and Literature in 2008.

Violet, 2015, Dr. Najjat Makki

Violet, 2015, Dr. Najjat Makki

Khulood Al Jubri

Bio:

Khulood Al Jabri (UAE), graduated with a bachelor’s degree from College of Humanities and Social Sciences, UAE University. She also has a Business Administration Diploma from Abu Dhabi University – Professional Development Programme. She is a member of UAE Plastic Arts Society, Sharjah, a member of management of board of UAE Writers Union / Abu Dhabi since 2012.

Statement:

Khulood is known for her unique ideas that combine various rich artistic influences reflecting different aspects of the local heritage and community life.  That presence is manifested physically, spiritually or as dream like phantoms. 

World of Giving II, Acrylic on Canvas, 2016, Khulood Al Jubri

World of Giving II, Acrylic on Canvas, 2016, Khulood Al Jubri

Abdul Qader Al Rais

Bio:

Abdul Qader Al Rais born in 1951 left Dubai to live in Kuwait where he resided as a student.  He was awarded first class honours as a young artist for his artwork inspired by the movie “Agony & the Ecstasy.”

Statement:

Largely self-taught Abdulqader Al Rais’ interest is in old, local architecture and nature.  His early work explores local scenery, coastlines and idyllic landscape of the UAE. Not only does he capture the place, but a sense of time.  His early works have led to continued success, winning multiple awards and has garnered the attention of national and international media.

Untitled I,Watercolour,  2016, Abdul Qader Al Rais

Untitled I,Watercolour,  2016, Abdul Qader Al Rais

Nadia Kaabi-Linke

 

Bio

Nadia Kaabi-Linke was born in Tunis, Tunisia, 1978, and raised in Tunisia and the United Arab Emirates. She graduated from the University of Fine Arts, Tunis, in 1999, and earned a PhD at Université Paris-Sorbonne in 2008.

Kaabi-Linke has had solo exhibitions at Centro de Arte Moderna, Fundacao Calouste Gulbenkian, Lisbon and the Mosaic Rooms, London in 2014, as well as Dallas Contemporary, Texas in 2015. Selected group exhibition highlights include shows at Bahrain National Museum, Manama, Nam June Paik Art Center, Seoul and Museum of Modern Art, New York, all in 2013; Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Humlebaek, Denmark in 2014; and Marta Herford Museum, Germany and the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, both in 2016. She has participated in numerous biennales, including Venice Biennale 2011, Liverpool Biennial 2012 and Kochi-Muziris Biennial, Kerala, India 2012.

Statement

Growing up between Tunis, Kiev, and Dubai, and now residing in Berlin, Kaabi-Linke’s personal history of migration across cultures and borders has greatly influenced her work. With subtlety and concision, her works give physical presence to that which tends to remain invisible, be it people, structures, or the geopolitical forces that shape and control them. Kaabi-Linke takes inspiration from the forgotten or misused urban spaces around her.

No one harms me unpunished takes as its basis a Scottish legend of a dark and foggy night when Viking looters were raiding a Scottish town. The night watch dozed off and was no obstacle for the invaders. Suddenly, a Viking stepped barefooted on a thistle and couldn’t forbear a yell. The thistle got broken, but the outcry woke up the townsfolk who then drove the assaulters back. In this sense the thistle became a symbol of Scottish regiments, rugby teams and conservative Men’s club in Great Britain. In this work Kaabi-Linke re-visits the heroic narrative behind this national myth through a woman’s perspective. While adopting the thistle as a metaphor for passive resistance, the work addresses a state of oppression and abuse which still is quite common but disregarded in modern societies, empowering a different understanding of conflict lines between men and women.

No One Harms Me Unpunished, Thistles, Steel and Brass, 2012, Nadia Kaabi- Linke

No One Harms Me Unpunished, Thistles, Steel and Brass, 2012, Nadia Kaabi- Linke

Ahmed Al Faresi

Bio:

Ahmed Al Faresi based in Al Ain, is a self-taught artist working with mixed media.
Since 2011 he has been quietly producing thought provoking artwork, constructed from unique materials inspired by his subconsciousness. 

 Statement:

"In my art, I encrypt contemporary topics using various materials to generate subliminal messages of scientific, religious, poetic and political tones. My use of unconventional materials is so that pieces invoke as many of the senses as possible”.

Imaginative Guardians, Pigmented Ink on cotton canvas, Ahmed Al Faresi

Imaginative Guardians, Pigmented Ink on cotton canvas, Ahmed Al Faresi

Walid Al Wawi

Bio

In 2011, Walid was awarded The Sheikha Manal Young Artist Award. Since then he had collaborated on group exhibitions, and was put through a residential experience leading to his first solo show, later contributing to international and local art festivals. He made his first live performance in late 2014 at FIAC in Paris. Walid’s work has been added to many collections throughout his career thus far, including a recent acquisition by collection of his Highness Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan. Recently. Walid went through the Salama Bint Hamdan Al Nahyan Emerging Artist Fellowship Programme to pursue his masters in the Fine Arts at Central Saint Martins College of Art, London, where he currently lives and studies.

Statement

Born 1988, Walid Al Wawi is a Jordanian Palestinian-native artist, working often in video and performance, concerned with the hybridisation of the modern Middle Eastern identity and the implication of what the artist calls “geo-political claustrophobia” upon cultural naturalisation.

Portrait Patriot consists of two A3 digital- colour prints of the artist’s passport photo, one of which is hand manipulated through constant rubber erasure and pencil drawing. The work attempts to deal with the contemporary image of the average Middle Eastern individual as he faces a form of “geo-political claustrophobia”, where borders of countries and geographical locations forcibly place him in a shallow and restricting dialogue. The work, a self- portrait of the artist, is a reprint of the artist’s “failed passport photo”, which he later hand-manipulated through forced erasure and pencil drawing, humorously but disparately trying to generate a peaceful and accepted image of himself.

Portrait Patriot, Hand manipulated print, Walid Al Wawi

Portrait Patriot, Hand manipulated print, Walid Al Wawi

Lamya Gargash

Bio:

Lamya received her Masters of Arts in Communication Design from Central Saint Martins in the UK in 2007 after graduating from the American University of Sharjah in 2004. She was the first Emirati artist to represent the U.A.E at the countrys first National participation at the 53rd Venice Biennial in 2009 where she showed Familial Series.  Lamya’s works have been included in solo and group shows around the world.  Lamya Gargash currently lives and works in Dubai. Currently represented by The Third Line Gallery, Dubai.

Statement:

Concerned with the relics of an ever self-renewing architecture, Lamya Gargash documents the forgotten spaces in public and private realms in Emirati society.  Through this practice, Gargash investigates the fast pace at which her surroundings are changing and what is left behind when a culture undergoes an unwavering thrust forward

Maji's- The Officers Club, Silver gelatin print on coat paper, 2005, Lamya Gargash

Maji's- The Officers Club, Silver gelatin print on coat paper, 2005, Lamya Gargash

Jamal Habroush Al Suwaidi

Bio:

Jamal Habroush Al Suwaidi is and Emirati artist born in 1971 whose artistic journey started at a young age, he went to the Art Institute in Sharjah where he took courses in drawing, sculpting and ceramics.  Most of his work associated with the Environment of the UAE, combining the aspects of nature, history and heritage taking inspiration from Kuwaiti sculptors Sami Mohammed and Isamu Noguchi. 

 

Statement

"In his sculptural work representing an oyster, we find it open to the viewer however no pearl is seen, instead of the pearl a barrel of oil.  A clear symbolic reference to the replacement of the primary industry of pearling in the region (United Arab Emirates)." 

Seashell, Polished and Matte Bronze on Granite Base,AP, Jamal Al Suwaidi

Seashell, Polished and Matte Bronze on Granite Base,AP, Jamal Al Suwaidi

Hazem Harb

Bio

Born in 1980 in Gaza, Palestinian artist Hazem Harb currently lives between Rome, Italy and Dubai, UAE. In 2004, Harb enrolled at the Academy of Fine Arts in Rome. He graduated from the European Institute of Design in 2009. Harb deals with a number of core issues including war, loss, trauma, human vulnerability and global instability. He continues to explore his work across multiple mediums, using each and every tool at his disposal.

Statement

These are not photographs, their edges jut beyond the confines of the frame, nudging into the realm of the 3-dimensional. The implied structure instigates an encounter with the past, departing from the idea of the archival as an aide-memoire or even an assemblage. These are newly forged objects, displaced from the past through an engaged process of transformation. With the physicality of an encounter, one which exists and is shaped by time and space, these memories incongruously exist right now. The sense of encounter gives rise to an opportunity for dialogue. Yet, even in these moments in which memory is made current, the fragmented, faulty structures are revealed. Harb becomes an archaeologist and architect of the past, providing directions compiled with the meticulous and attentive care of an engineer. What is re-proposed here is a new process. Emphasising the durational, mutable quality of memory, Harb demonstrates the flux of remembering, creating a contemporary catalyst where he “gives birth to something, which gives birth to something else”.

The Everlasting Presence of an Excluded Memory #2, 2016, Hazem Harb

The Everlasting Presence of an Excluded Memory #2, 2016, Hazem Harb

The Everlasting Presence of an Excluded Memory #1, 2016, Hazem Harb

The Everlasting Presence of an Excluded Memory #1, 2016, Hazem Harb

Maitha Demithan

Bio:

Maitha Demithan was born in 1989 in Dubai. She received her Bachelor’s Degree in Fine Arts at Zayed University. In 2009 Demithan's first scanography series of self-portraits titled Documentation, was exhibited at Lateefa bint Maktoum's studio and the gallery Tashkeel. Demithan exhibited her work at the Brisbane Biennial, Art Dubai.  She currently lives and works in Dubai.

Statement:

Maitha Demithan’s oeuvre combines several mediums: photography, scanography, painting, drawing and photo transfer.  Demithan’s subjects are people from her immediate surroundings - family members, friends, colleagues, thus representing typical figures from Emirati society. She created dream-like portraits by scanning separate body parts, then assembling, and layering them on top of each other.  While rooted in tradition, Demithan’s work also reflects the multifaceted, colourful culture of her home country with the human figure in its epicentre.

 

Growth, Mixed Media/ Scanography, 2015, Maitha Demithan

Growth, Mixed Media/ Scanography, 2015, Maitha Demithan

 

 

Khalid Al Banna

Khalid Al Banna

Bio:

Khalid Al Banna studied architecture and engineering at the United Arab Emirates University in Al Ain.  Since graduating in 1997, he has been creating art in numerous mediums – including drawing, printmaking, painting, and sculpture – and is now renowned for his mixed collages and etchings. Al Banna has participated in many exhibitions nationally and internationally, including Egypt, Germany, Italy, Lebanon, Switzerland, and the United States. He currently lives and works in Sharjah.

Statement:

Known for their vivid colors and distinct shapes, Khalid Al Banna’s textile works symbolize the diverse populations in the UAE today. Each type of fabric used to create his work represents a different nationality residing in the Emirates. The amount he chooses directly corresponds with local demographics. Al Banna uses bright, multicolored cloth from jalabiya, a traditional dress for Emirati women that is still popular with young girls today. Emiratis have witnessed the disappearance of many customs since the UAE was established over forty years ago, Al Banna believes his works help preserve and revive time-honored materials associated with the nation’s heritage. He intersperses these fabrics in order to convey the country’s cosmopolitan character.

 

Wedding 02, Fabric, beads and glitter, 2016, Khalid Al Banna

Wedding 02, Fabric, beads and glitter, 2016, Khalid Al Banna

Maisoon Al Saleh

Bio:

Born in 1988 the up-and-coming Emirati artist and entrepreneur Maisoon Al Saleh is active in her practice both in Dubai and internationally. She graduated from Zayed University in 2010, with a degree in Interior Design. Al Saleh’s first solo show was at the Maraya Art Center, Sharjah, in Autumn 2010.

 

Statement:

Her art dives sometimes literally, below the obvious meaning residing on the surface of stories and accounts of the past. Al Saleh focuses on bones and skulls as a means of telling stories that transcend age and gender. She’s inspired in part by historic representational art, like the famous early twentieth century Calaveras (skull) prints of Mexican artist José Guadalupe Posada. In each painting, skeletal compositions reveal stories from Emirati life, culture and history, asserting new meaning that undermines the bones’ symbolic association with death and poison. 

 

"I wanted to focus on the inside and remind everyone of just how similar we all are in the end" – Maisoon Al Saleh.

BB, Acrylic on Canvas, 2010, Maisoon Al Saleh

BB, Acrylic on Canvas, 2010, Maisoon Al Saleh

Reem Al Ghaith

Reem Al Ghaith a young talented artist working in visual art, graphic design, printmaking, and photography.  Born and raised in Dubai where she currently lives and works, her work examines changes in the urban and social landscape of the UAE and how these relate to tradition and history.  She will be exhibiting two enormous two metre by three metre freestanding photos as part of Art Nomads – Made in The Emirates exhibition in the Kunstquartier Bethanian this December.

Frame 2, Photography, Reem Al Ghaith

Frame 2, Photography, Reem Al Ghaith

SALAMA NASIB

Bio:

Salama Nasib holds a Bachelor's degree in Visual Art from Zayed University. She has exhibited at local and international venues, including Tashkeel, Ara Gallery and Rira Gallery, as well as at the Venice Biennale, The Meridian International Centre in Washington DC, and The Printmaking Centre of New Jersey. Nasib has established herself as a successful emerging Emirati artist, specifically in printmaking. She has been part of the inaugural batch of the Salama Emerging Artist fellowship, provided by the Salama bint Hamdan Al Nahyan Foundation and in collaboration with Rhode Island School of Design. In addition, Nasib has been the guest artist of Past Forward: Exhibitions from the UAE, hosted in East Lansing (Michigan) in USA, as the fifth destination of the touring exhibition. Nasib also worked as a Studio Coordinator at Tashkeel where she stayed abreast of the latest Emirati art trends while managing seven studios, organising artistic and collaborative workshops, and co-curating upcoming exhibitions. Nasib is currently a full-time artist living in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

 

Statement:

My work reflects on the constant dialogue between my heart and my brain. This dialogue revolves around the topic of memory, and is typically composed of questions, answers, reflections and imaginative scenarios. There are tangible narratives shown through installation where viewers can interact with the piece and intangible narratives depicted through illustrated pieces usually as drawings or prints on paper. Through my research on the subject of memory I have come to better understanding, and perhaps a realization of how powerful memories are, both obscure and ephemeral at the same time. While pursuing this subject I hope to use printmaking to further investigate similarities and differences between my own stories, my culture, and people whom I will encounter.  I see many similarities between my subject matter and printmaking. Printmaking is about having a surface, creating a mark on it, and then printing multiple times without risking losing the original mark making. This surface – or matrix as referred to in the printmaking world – is often infinite.