Sunday, December 18, 2005

Contemporary Curves

Last night I finally visited the “Contemporary Curves” art exhibition held at Al Riwaq Art Gallery in Adliya. The exhibition is the third in a series of art exhibitions focusing on innovation and contemporary creation in art by a bunch of local artists.

The art pieces on display are nothing less than impressive. The artists have transformed the entire gallery into breathing, living artwork, with images, scriptures, video displays and sculptures. It also introduced four new faces to the local art scene, all university students.

I take my hat off to all of the participating artists and I must also praise the role of Bayan Kanoo, the owner of Al Riwaq Gallery, into bringing such a feat of innovation and creativity to life. It is rare to find a place where the number one priority is creativity

The open discussion that followed that evening was, personally, an eye-opener. I gathered that many of the challenges are problems facing artists are similar to those facing writers. One of these was the question of whether the creator is present a message or a statement through their work, an element linked directly to the value of the publics’ understanding of the piece in question.

I personally think that, for both artist and writers, the audiences’ comprehension of your work is not as significant when you are presenting a statement, than it is a message. And here lay the issue of the artist’s own ambition and objective. An art piece such as Anas Al Shaikh’s, one of Bahrain’s most reputable and talented young contemporary artist (who was with us at the discussion last night), which is introduced at Contemporary Curves, has raised many questions, some even expressed their disapproval of his piece which had a political and patriotic agenda, something that is very rarely touched upon by our local artists.

If you have a chance, I do urge you to go and see it. You can catch “Contemporary Curves” from 10am to 8pm everyday until Dec 22. I’m sure it will give your some food for thought.

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