Courtyard Gallery is thrilled to collaborate with Graffik Gallery - UK on our first “Pop Wall” exhibition in Dubai featuring never seen before pop artworks by established artists from the UK, Japan and the Middle East.
To match the growing popularity of the ‘pop art’ scene in Dubai, our artists are flying in from different parts of the world exclusively to transform Courtyard Gallery into pop art galore with their acrylic and mixed media works, spray painted graffiti artworks, printed posters, and even pop-themed chairs and purses.
Saif B. Chilmiran was born in Abu Dhabi to an Iraqi father and a Syrian mother. Saif began expressing himself through graffiti on public walls since 2004. By 2009 his portfolio listed commissioned murals for Minicooper, MTV Arabia, Redbull, Marc Ecko, and many more. While attending university, Saif began experimenting with street art and canvas work portraying political irony and social commentary. By 2011 he was featured in his first group show at Pro Arts Gallery in Dubai featuring his works alongside the forefathers of street art such as Banksy, Shepard Fairey, Faile, and MBW. Since then his work reached Pro Arts Gallery, Showcase Gallery, Opera Gallery, and auctions at Milon’s Auction House Paris and Ayyam Gallery.
Yazan Halwani was born in Beirut in 1993. He was very Interested in the urban culture and street arts since he was a teenager. Soon enough, he got involved in the underground hip hop culture after being influenced by the French hip hop scene. At the age of 14, Yazan started producing the largest graffiti murals on the walls of Beirut, and he is now one of the youngest graffiti artists in the Middle East. Yazan’s unique style quickly gained popularity in Lebanon that he started producing original graffiti artworks for private residences, TV shows and shops. Yazan participated in many live graffiti events and exhibitions; he has also won first place in the Bliss graffiti competition held in December 2010 in Hamra, in which most of the Lebanese graffiti artists participated.
Raafat Karimeh started drawing since the age of ten and studied Fine Arts and Graphic design at university. Raafat’s creative career started at a printing press while he attended university, and expanded from publishing to design, advertising, branding, providing window displays, and print production. His work spanned Sweden, Paris, Lebanon, Egypt, Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar and even the Phillipines. Raafat’s witty artworks are printed on 100% cotton paper using the Giclée method to result in his signature crisp, high quality images. Giclée is an intricate process that creates digital fine art by spraying ink from high quality inkjet printer. This process requires advanced technology and years of proper training and experience to be perfected. Giclée printing process provides remarkable color accuracy and incredibly detailed fine prints that can be found in the world’s leading museums including the Louvre, Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Guggenheim. Today Raafat focuses on the interaction between brands and the modern consumer through his artworks. Each of his work on display in Pop Wall is one out of only 7 limited editions.
London Born, The Dotmasters is the offspring of C6.org, a new-media based collective of art-pranksters active throughout the 1990s. The Dotmasters take a sideways look at a populist medium with a typically English sense of humour, throwing two fingers up at the passer-by with impeccably detailed stencil work. Hitting the headlines worldwide in 1997 with “Man in a box” they incarcerated and starved one of their members in a surveillance cube in a gallery in Brighton. Their work was eclectic, merging graffiti, new media and performance from the street, night clubs and galleries generating a steady stream of irreverent broadcasts. The Dotmasters work can be found anywhere from a pikey trailer park to the penthouses of the Cote D/azur and has been featured in both Banksy’s Cans Festival in Waterloo and his Oscar nominated feature film ‘Exit Through The Gift Shop’.
Aito, a Japanese street art whiz, has been active on the streets of London for the past few years, where he wholeheartedly aided the evolution of London graffiti scene and established a reputation of a Japanese Banksy. Aito studied Graphic Design at the Tokyo Designer School. He moved to London in 2011 to follow his creative dream at the heart of the Street Art Movement. Before earning his nickname the “Japanese Banksy”, Aito spent his time in London painting and learning new skills from other street artists. He is often seen painting in the “Banksy Tunnel” at Leeke Street and down the back streets of East London. His artwork involves beautiful stenciled images always filled with particular emotions and a unique references to Japanese art. Emotional, intimate and well painted, AITO’s graffiti have gained a large number of admirers across the UK and the globe.
UK born, Binty Bint, is one of the most liked and talked about anonymous graffiti girls in Europe. Her renowned candy colored chickens, sunny side eggs, striking patterns and assorted multi-coloured creatures attract thousands of fans around the world as far as Mexico, Brazil, Japan, New York, San Francisco, Europe and the UK. Unapologetic, irreverent and lots of fun, Binty Bint stands apart from the serious street art scene, instead choosing to lighten up a grey concrete world with her cheerful statements and captivating designs. Binty Bint’s artwork is instantly identifiable and she is fast becoming one of the biggest names in the street art world, a seriously fun brand with a not so serious attitude. She has designed iconic livery for London’s famous fleet of Foxton cars. With over 1,000 custom designed Minis this could be Binty’s biggest art job to date.
Trust.iCON is a global street art movement, and iCON is an anonymous street artist from South East London. iCON only started his street work in 2009 to continue producing new thought provoking and often controversial works daily. iCON’s goal is to inspire using the walls of London streets are his canvas. In 2013 iCON was brought to the limelight with his sell out shows in Los Angeles, Cape Town and London bringing about Trust.iCON’s unprecedented rise. His now infamous Mario ‘Stop and Search’ piece has been published in books and magazines around the world.
iCON’s popular Urban artworks reached further international exposure from a huge London solo show followed by another solo in Los Angeles before coming to Dubai. Trust.iCON’s identity remains a closely guarded secret today.
Born in the UK and without formal art training or schooling, Robin Coleman’s popularity and success are purely down to his hard work and original style. Each painting Robin produces takes hours and weeks of hard work and dedication to complete. He’s an artist that refuses assistants or interns, hence the demand for the few works that are produced is extremely high. To date Robin has been included in numerous exhibitions both in the UK and International galleries, this year alone see him included in exhibitions in California, Cape Town, Dubai and Paris. He also has a solo show for later in 2014 in London.
Maria Iqbal was born in Kabul, Afghanistan, raised in the UAE and moved to America to become a lawyer. After a comically clueless period which included "sitting in university classes that had nothing to do with me," she ended up working in the advertising industry as an art director for 10 years. She has recently returned to Dubai after spending a ridiculously inspiring year in India that "blew my foundation apart. It dawned on me that I am meant to be an artist." This she had been told over and over her whole life but sometimes the truth takes its sweet wonderful time to sink in.
Maria makes vibrantly detailed Pop inspired furniture, wall art and fasionable accessories that reveal her love of portraiture, fashion illustration and graphic design. Now based in al Quoz, she plans to stay here happily ever after. Maria has been featured in major publications around the world from Architectural digest to Italian Vogue, as well as in many of the Dubai publications (The National, Gulf news, Khaleej Times, InsideOut, Grazia, TimeOut Dubai, 7 days, Inspired Living).
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