Artspace Dubai has the pleasure of exhibiting 3 artist's for Summer 2013. The featured artists include Kamal Boullata, Zakaria Ramhani and Azar Emdadi.
Kamal Boullata is a Palestinian painter and writer. Public collections holding his art include the British Museum, London; Institut du Monde Arabe, Paris; NewYork Public Library, New York; The Khalid Shoman Foundation, Amman; Jordan National Gallery, Amman; Sharjah Art Museum, Sharjah and the Bibliothèque Louis Notari, Monaco.
His writings on Arab and Palestinian art have appeared in exhibition catalogues, anthologies and periodicals, including the Journal of Palestine Studies, Third Text, Michigan Quarterly Review, Muslim World, Quadernos de la Alhambra and The Encyclopedia of the Palestinians. He is the author of Istihdar al-Makan: Dirasat fi al-Fan al-Tashkili al-Filastini al-Mu’asir (Recovery of Place: A Study of Contemporary Palestinian Art (Alecso, Tunis, 2000), the editor of Belonging and Globalisation: Critical Essays on Contemporary Art and Culture (Saqi, London, 2008) and the author of Palestinian Art: From 1850 to the Present (Saqi, London 2009).
Born in Tangiers (Morocco) in 1983, Zakaria Ramhani grew up in an artistic household. In 2006, Zakaria became the youngest person from his country to receive a bursary from the French government to participate in a creative residency at the Cité Internationale des arts in Paris. Through this direct contact with Western culture and international contemporary art, Ramhani developed new personal and artistic preoccupations. Upon his return to his Tangiers workshop in 2007, he involved himself with great urgency in a vast project that he calls De droite à gauche.
Ramhani’s early works developed a sense of isolated and expressive human figures placed in the foreground of compositions. These were saturated with colours and symbolic objects but devoid of a clear narrative, compelling feelings of idleness and desolation in the spectator. His current works however use Arabic, sometimes juxtaposed with French and English, by superimposing letters, words and phrases to create layers of readable and non-readable matter that are shaped into vibrant and mesmerizing faces. He thus creates sets of paintings that are presented as polyptychs or diptychs and have quickly captivated people’s interest and generated many new avenues for his international career.
Commenting on this new artistic approach he says “ When I returned home to Tangier after spending eight months living in France, I began writing on the canvas rather than painting on it. I no longer painted pictures; I wrote portraits.” Ramhani's pursuit of his resolutely expressive and spirited art has been vindicated, and it now freely extends itself into pictorial representations where the sacred, the poetic, and the political are echoes of the world's realities and absurdities.
Azar Emdadi, born in Iran Western Azerbaijan, lives and works in South Yorkshire, UK. Azar obtained her BA in Multi-disciplinary Design specialising in Photography at Stafford shire Polytechnic in 1989. In 1996 these skills were developed further through a Postgraduate course in Gender Studies at Sheffield Hallam University, where Azar majored in the field of ‘Women in Film.’
Azar began to develop her photographic work after leaving University with a short placement at Sheffield Star Newspapers. Then in 1990 she was commissioned to document the war with Armenia in Soviet Azerbaijan. This extremely sensitive and important work was published internationally in many journals.
Azar has since applied her skills as 'Photography Education Co-ordinator' for the Pavilion Woman’s Art Gallery in Leeds where, during the 90’s, she initiated and managed an innovative photographic project for women. Various techniques for manipulating visual media, including creative photography, were employed subjectively. Producing startling images, these works articulated first and foremost the individual’s emotional responses in relation to contextual issues of ‘Self and Identity’. This themed body of work has since been exhibited in various libraries and galleries in the UK.
Azar's uniquely intimate perspective, expressed through the medium of video and photography, has twice secured her the Yorkshire and Humberside Arts and Video Awards. These works have facilitated her current engagement with art based concerns, with particular emphasis on social, political and gender issues.
Azar Emdadi has held various exhibitions both in the UK and internationally, including a solo show at the World Cultural House of Berlin, Vatan Camiyyati (Homeland Society) in BAKU and in the UK shown work at Stoke on Trent Museum, Leicester City Hall, St David Hall Cardiff, Graves Art Gallery and London Ross Issa Project, She has also published, curated and taken part in gallery educational arts programmes.