NY | Chelsea

Signs: Contemporary Arab Art

October 14 – November 14, 2009

About This Exhibition

New York, NY, July 20, 2009—Signs: Contemporary Arab Art is a groundbreaking exhibition offering a rare glimpse into the Arab art world. The first of its kind in New York, this exhibition presents the work of seven influential artists from various countries in the Middle East. Curated by noted art historian and curator Karin von Roques, the exhibition explores the role of traditional Islamic calligraphy and symbols in the contemporary Arab consciousness. Grappling with aesthetic philosophy, mysticism, tradition, and issues of everyday survival and existence, all seven artists challenge convention and create new visual language.

Once the cradle of ancient civilization, the Middle East has a compelling artistic history. For centuries, the written word has played a defining role in Islamic visual culture— a legacy that persists even today. Working with different media, including paint on canvas, collage, ink on paper, wood and gold leaf, these artists take traditional Arabic script and symbols as their point of departure. Qatari artist Yousef Ahmad distills Arabic letters into abstract shapes and gestural marks that sweep across dream-like mixed-media surfaces. Syrian artist Khaled Al-Saa'i is inspired by poetry and Sufi philosophy, and paints spacious landscapes in which words float, overlap and follow their own particular rhythm. Offering a nuanced view of the culture of the Middle East, these innovative artists create complex contemporary works that draw on the spiritual depth of ancient Islamic art.

Rather than singling out Arab culture as "other," this exhibition aims to further intercultural dialogue between the Arab world and the West. Having studied and lived in the Middle East over the past decade, exhibition curator Karin von Roques has an intimate and unique understanding of the region and its artists. She throws into relief the wide range of work emerging from the contemporary Middle East, bringing its seminal artists to an international audience. Gallery director Sundaram Tagore says, "This exhibition was developed with the prime motivation being connoisseurship rather than the more expected issues of religion or politics. I believe connoisseurship will be the defining factor in the post-recession art world."

The full roster of artists is as follows: Ahmad Moualla (Syria); Ayman El Semary (Egypt); Hassan Massoudy (Iraq); Khaled Al-Saa'i (Syria); Ali Hassan (Qatar); Georges Fikry Ibrahim (Egypt); and Yousef Ahmad (Qatar).


Yousef Ahmad

Born Doha, Qatar, 1955
B.A., arts and education, Helwan University, Egypt
M.F.A., fine arts, California
Art consultant, Hewar Art Gallery, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
Art consultant, Contemporary Art Museum, Qatar Foundation

Selected Solo Exhibitions

The Movement (to mark the 30th anniversary of the artist's first solo exhibition in Qatar), 2007
VCV University Gallery, Doha, Qatar, 2004
Ahmad Al-Adwani Gallery, Kuwait City, Kuwait, 2003
French Cultural Centre, Doha, Qatar, 2003
Qatar Association of Plastic Arts, Doha, Qatar, 2000
Gandhir Gallery, Kuwait, 1994
Doha, 1983
Washington, 1982
Buffalo, New York, 1980-1981
Doha, Qatar, 1977

Selected Group Exhibitions

Art Paris, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, 2008
Istanbul Sculptures Symposium, Turkey, 2008
Art Dubai, United Arab Emirates, 2007, 2008
Al Kharafi Biennial for Contemporary Arab Art, Kuwait, 2006
Language of the Desert, Bonn Museum of Modern Art, Germany, 2005 and Arab World Institute, Paris, 2006
Tehran First International Biennial of Islamic Arts, Iran, 2000
Arabian Peninsula Artists, Amman, Jordan, 2000
Bangladesh Seventh Contemporary Asian Art Exhibition, Dhaka, 1999
Fifth Periodic Exhibition of Plastic Arts and Calligraphy, Doha, Qatar, 1999
Sharjah Fourth Biennial, United Arab Emirates, 1999
New Delhi Triennial, India, 1998
Guest of honor, Sharjah First Biennial, United Arab Emirates,1992
Second Exhibition of Gulf Cooperation Council Artists, 1991
Ankara Third International Euro-Asian Art Exhibition, 1990
Norway World Engraving Triennial, 1989
First Exhibition of Gulf Cooperation Council Artists, Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudia Arabia, 1989
Contemporary Islamic Art Exhibition, Barbican Gallery, London, United Kingdom, 1989
Arab Calligraphers-Artists Exhibition, London, United Kingdom, 1989
Havana World Biennial, Cuba, 1989
Second International Plastic Arts Festival, Baghdad, Iraq, 1988
Ankara Second International Euro-Asian Arts Biennial, Turkey, 1988
First Arab Week Exhibition, London, United Kingdom, 1988
Gulf Cooperation Council Art Friends Exhibitions, 1985-1995: Abu Dhabi, Ajman, Doha, Riyadh, Manama, Jeddah, Kuwait, Jordan, Damascus, Bonn, Washington, Cairo, Tunis, Madrid, Dominican Republic, Muscat
Cairo Biennial, Egypt, 1984, 1986, 1988, 1992, 1994, 1996, 1998
Arab Calligraphers-Artists Exhibition, Grapheti Gallery, London, United Kingdom, 1984
Media exhibitions held by the Ministry of Information during official visits of H.H. Prince of Qatar to Pakistan, India, South Korea, Ankara, Istanbul, Madrid, London, Paris, Cairo, Damascus, 1984-1990
Omani Youth Exhibition, 1983
Arab Calligraphers-Artists Exhibition, Iraq Cultural Centre, London, United Kingdom, 1983
Second Gulf Exhibition, Baghdad, Iraq, 1982
Exhibitions of Qatari Plastic Arts Association, 1980-2006
Sculpture World Conference, Washington, 1980
The First Gulf Exhibition, Doha, Qatar, 1980
The Three Friends Exhibitions, 1977, 1978, 1980
Afro Arab Artists Gathering Exhibition, Tunis, 1977
The Exhibitions of the Ministry of Culture and Information, London and Paris, 1977, Tunis, 1978
22 February Exhibition, Doha, Qatar, 1977
The Second General Plastic Art Exhibition, Doha, Qatar, 1976
The Final-Year Exhibition at the College of Art Education, Cairo, Egypt, 1976
Second Arab Biennial, Rabat, Morocco, 1976
First Cairo-based Qatari Students Exhibition, Egypt, 1975
The Roaming Arab League Exhibition, 1974
First Arab Biennial, Baghdad, Iraq, 1974
Arab Biennial, Kuwait, 1973-1985
The General Exhibition, Gulf Hotel, 1973
Modern art exhibition, Al Jesrah Cultural and Social Club, 1973
The permanent exhibition, Al Jesrah Cultural and Social Club, 1972

Awards

Referees' Award, Al Kharafi First International Biennial of Contemporary Arab Art, Kuwait, 2006
Abha Art Prize, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, 2000
Gold Palm-Leaf, Fifth Exhibition of Gulf Cooperation Council Artists Exhibition, Doha, Qatar, 1999
Referees' Award, Cairo Seventh Biennial, 1998
Special recognition, Sharjah Third Biennial, by H. H. Sheikh Dr. Sultan Al Qasimi, ruler of Sharjah, United Arab Emirates
Referees' Award, Cairo Sixth Biennial, Egypt,1996
Gold Palm-Leaf, Fourth Gulf Cooperation Council Artists Exhibition, Kuwait, 1996
First prize, First Tourist Exhibition, Doha, Qatar, 1993
Gold Palm-Leaf, Second Gulf Cooperation Council Artists Exhibition, 1991
Gold Palm-Leaf, First Gulf Cooperation Council Artists Exhibition, 1989
Referees' Award, Ankara International Biennial, Turkey,1986
Third prize, bronze medal, Cairo Second Biennial, Egypt, 1986
First prize, Baghdad Festival, Iraq, 1986
Second prize, Gulf Air Competition, 1984
Three certificates of recognition, Arab Biennial Exhibition I, Kuwait, 1975, 1977, 1985

Collections

Commercial Bank, Qatar, 2008
Al Faisal Group, Doha, Qatar, 2007
The German Bank, Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, 2006
Qatar International Bank, 2004
Sharjah Arts Museum, United Arab Emirates
Shoman Institute, Amman, Jordan, 2000
Kindah Institute, Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, 1999
Sheikh Hasan bin Mohamed bin Ali Al Thani, project of the Arab Museum for Modern Art, 1994
Islamic Studies Centre, Istanbul, Turkey, 1993
An Attempt for Solitude, The Jordanian Museum for Modern Arts, 1990
Peace, Hiroshima Museum, Japan, 1989
International Museum of Engravings, Asilah, Morocco, 1985
An engraved work on Qatar, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C., 1982
Ministry of Information and Culture, since 1978
The Tailor Woman, Contemporary Arab Art Museum, Damascus, 1972


Khaled Al-Saa'i

Born Syria, 1970
Certificate, calligraphy, Research Centre for Islamic History, Art, and Culture, Istanbul, Turkey, 1998
M.A., fine arts, University of Damascus, Syria, 1997
B.A., fine arts, painting, University of Damascus, Syria, 1995

Selected Solo Exhibitions

French Cultural Center, Damascus, Syria, 2009
Dar Al Funoon, Kuwait, 2007
Majlis Gallery, Dubai, United Arab Emirates, 2007
Cultural Foundation, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, 2006
Pellouailles-les-Vignes, Nantes, France, 2005
Poems in Calligraphy, Majlis Gallery, Dubai, United Arab Emirates, 2005
Green Art Gallery, Dubai, United Arab Emirates, 2004
Arab World Institute, Paris, France, 2000
French Cultural Centre, Damascus, Syria, 2000
Atassi Gallery, Damascus, Syria. 2000
Institut Francais d'Etudes Arabes Damasc (IFEAD), Damascus, Syria, 1999
Spanish Institute, Damascus, Syria, 1996

Selected Group Exhibitions

Dubai Art Fair and Creek Art Fair, Dubai, United Arab Emirates, 2009
Kashya Hildebrand Gallery, Zurich, Switzerland, 2008
Visual and Audible Art Exhibition, Sharjah Museum of Art, United Arab Emirates, 2007
San Pedro Museum of Art, Mexico, 2007
Al Bareh Art Gallery, Bahrain, 2007
Arab World Institute, Paris, France, 2006
Language of the Desert, Bonn Museum of Art, Germany, 2005
The Art of the Written Word in the Middle East, University of Michigan Museum of Art, Ann Arbor, 2005
Written Cosmos, Frankfurt Museum of Applied Art, Germany, 2004
Visual and Audible, sixth session, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates, 2003
Slater International House, Wellesley College, Wellesley, Massachusetts, 2003
Sharjah Museum of Art, United Arab Emirates, 2002
Art and Sufism, organized by the Cervantes Institute, National Museum of Damascus, Syria; Royal Museum of Amman, Jordan; Bilad Al Sham Gallery, Aleppo Syria; UNESCO Palace, Beirut, Lebanon; Granada and Seville Spain, 2001-2004
Exhibition of Syrian artists organized by the Ministry of Culture, National Museum of Art, Damascus, Syria, 1997
Biennial Almahaba Arts Festival, Latakia, Syria, 1997
Exhibition of Syrian artists organized by the Ministry of Culture, National Museum of Syria, 1991
Al Mayadin City Hall, Syria, 1987

Awards

Modern calligraphy prize, third, International Calligraphy Biennial, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates, 2008
Modern calligraphy prize, Audio-Visual Art Exhibition, Sharjah Museum of Art, United Arab Emirates
First prize of Diwany Jaly, seventh International Competition of Calligraphy, Research Centre for Islamic History, Art, and Culture, Istanbul, Turkey, 2007
Classic Calligraphy Prize, second Biennial of Calligraphy in Arab World, Sharjah, UAE, 2006
First prize for Diwany Jaly script, Master Competition of Calligraphy, sponsored by Al Baraka Turk Bank, Istanbul, Turkey, 2005
First prize for modern of Arabic calligraphy, first Arabic calligraphy, first Biennial of Calligraphy in the Arab World, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates, 2004
Diwany Jaly prize from the sixth international competition, Istanbul, Turkey, 2004
Modernity prize, Audio-Visual Festival, Sharjah Museum of Arts, United Arab Emirates, 2003
The fifth international competition on Arabic calligraphy, Diwany Jaly style, Istanbul, Turkey, 2001
Certificate of distinction, Festival of Music, Poetry and Calligraphy, Obernai, France, 2000
Prize for young artist, presented by the British Counsel, Damascus, Syria, 2000
Biennial of Young Artists, Rome, Italy, 1999
Certificate of distinction, nominated one of the 10 best international calligraphers, and first prize for Diwany Jaly style calligraphy, First International Festival of Arabic Calligraphy, Tehran, Iran, 1997

Workshops

Sharjah Institute of Arts, United Arab Emirates, 2007
Free Atelier, Kuwait, 2006
Museum of Calligraphy and Ornament, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates, 2006
Workshop and lecture, Bonn Museum of Art, Germany, 2005
University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, 2005
Wellesley College, Wellesley, Massachusetts, 2005
University of Michigan Museum of Arts, Ann Arbor, 2006
Technique of calligraphy, first Biennial of Calligraphy, United Arab Emirates, 2004
Workshop and lecture, Michigan Union, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, 2003
Workshop and exhibition, Illinois Institute of Technology, Chicago, 2003
Workshop, lecture and exhibition, Wellesley College, Wellesley, Massachusetts, 2006
Centre of Arabic Calligraphy, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates, 2002
Rhythm and forms in Arabic calligraphy, 2002
Workshop and lecture, Inma Gallery, Al Khobar City, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, 2002
The relationship between Arabic calligraphy and plastic art, Sharjah Museum of Art, United Arab Emirates, 2002
Washtenaw Community College, Ypsilanti, Michigan, 2002
University of Michigan Museum of Art, Ann Arbor, 2002
History of the Arabic calligraphy, Middlebury College, Middlebury, Vermont, 2002
Wellesley College, Wellesley, Massachusetts, 2002
Spirituality of Arabic calligraphy, Islamic Centre of Canton, Michigan, 2001
Workshop with musician Khaled Jarmani, Damascus, Syria, audio-visual dialogue, 2001

Teaching

Islamic Art Center, Kuwait, 2006
Arabic calligraphy and Islamic art, Centre for Islamic Arts and Calligraphy, Kuwait, 2006
Introduction to Arabic calligraphy, Centre for Middle Eastern and North African Studies, 2005
Introduction to Arabic Calligraphy, Fine Art College, Sharjah University, UAE, 2005
Arabic calligraphy and identity, in Kuwait, 2003
Arabic Calligraphy in the Islamic centre of Ann Arbor, 2003
Arabic Calligraphy, University of Michigan, Department of Near Eastern Studies, University of Michigan International Institute, Ann Arbor, 2002-2003
Arabic calligraphy, Institut Français d'Etudes Arabes, 1997-2001
Painting and drawing, University of Damascus, Syria, 1997-1998

Lectures

Arabic calligraphy and identity, Plastic Art Society, Kuwait, 2003
Relationship between Arabic language and Arabic calligraphy, Arabic Circle, Department of Near Eastern Studies, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, 2001
Arabic calligraphy, Middlebury College, Middelbury, Vermont, 2001
Artist expression of Arabic calligraphy, Arabic Circle, Department of Near Eastern Studies, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, 2001
Sufism and calligraphy, National Museum of Art, Damascus, Syria, 2001


Hassan Massoudy

Born Najef, Iraq, 1944
Moved to Baghdad, Iraq, 1961, to study classical calligraphy, graphic arts, communication arts, and fine arts
Moved to Paris, France,1969, to enroll at L'Ecole des Beaux-Arts ; graduated 1975

Selected Exhibitions

Arabesque : Arts of the Arab World, The Kennedy Center, Washington, D.C., 2009
Sciptorial, Musée d'Avranches, France, 2008
Word into Art: Artists of the Modern Middle East, organized by the British Museum, Dubai, United Arab Emirates, 2008
Hunar Gallery, Dubai, United Arab Emirates, 2008
October Gallery, London, United Kingdom, 2007
Centre d'Art Contemporain, Abbaye de Trizay, France, 2007
Galerie-jardin d'Anh Tuyêt, Blagnac, France, 2007
Chapelle du séminaire, Moissac, France, 2007
Eglise des Dominicains et Espace Boulat du Couvent des Minimes, Perpignan, France, 2007
Château de Villiers, Draveil, France, 2007
Word into Art: Artists of the Modern Middle East, British Museum, London, United Kingdom, 2006
Festival Soirs en Scène sur Tarn, La Tour de la Défense, Villemur sur Tarn, 2006
Maison Joseph Perrier, Châlons en Champagne, France, 2006
Théâtre du Lierre, Paris, France, 2006
Ferme du Mousseau, Elancourt, France, 2005
Médiathèque du Pays de Mauriac, Mauriac, France, 2005
Salle André Malraux, Yerres, France, 2005
Musée Chateau Saint Jean, Nogent-le-Rotrou, France, 2005
Maison des Mémoires, Carcassonne, France, 2004
Syndicat d'Initiative, Issigeac, France, 2004
Maison de la Rencontre, Ecully, France, 2003
Maison des Arts et de la Communication, Sallaumines, France, 2003
Centre Culturel François Villon, Enghien les Bains, France, 2002
Hunar Gallery, Dubai, United Arab Emirates, 2002
Espace culturel François Mauriac, Sevran, France, 2002
Galerie Atelier Gustave, Paris, France, 2002
Maison des Jeunes et de la Culture, Colombes, France, 2002
Pavillon des Arts, Mont de Marsan, France, 2001
Artothèque de Cherbourg, France, 2001
Terres d'Ecritures, Grignan, France, 2001
Sharja Museum, United Arab Emirates, 2001
Bibliothèque Municipale, Montbéliard, France, 2000
Artothèque, Centre Culturel, Vitré, France, 2000
Maison de la Fontaine, Brest, France, 2000
Fondation Asselah, Alger, Algérie, 1999
Sacred music festival, Dar Batha Museum, Fez, Morocco, 1999
Espace Henri Matisse, Creil, France, 1999
Centre Culturel, Saint Pierre des Corps, France, 1998
Comptoir des Ecritures , Paris, France, 1998
Centre Culturel Saint-Exupéry, Reims, France, 1997
Espace Saint Martin, Paris, France, 1997
Bibliothèque Municipale , Obernai, France, 1997
Maison des Jeunes et de la Culture , Briançon, France, 1996
La Médiatine, Brussels, Belgium, 1996
Espace 110, Illzach, France, 1996
Centre Culturel, Meudon, France, 1995
La Collégiale de Saint-Pierre Le Puellier, Orléans, France, 1995
La Ferme des Arts, Vaison-la-Romaine, France, 1995
Médiathèque Municipale , Saint-Apollinaire, France, 1995
Médiathèque Municipale , Sète, France, 1995
Centre des Cultures Méditerranéennes, Belfort, France, 1994
Galerie Tammouz, Brussels, Belgium, 1994
Centre Culturel le Dôme, Albertville, France, 1994
Salle des Templiers, Montélimar, France, 1994
Bibliothèque Municipale, Chambon-sur-Lignon, France, 1994
Centre Culturel, Rungis, France, 1994
Centre Culturel, Colomiers, France, 1994
Maison des Jeunes et de la Culture , Annecy-le-Vieux, France, 1993
Centre d'Action Culturelle Saint-Martial, Angoulême, France, 1993
Musée Barrois, Bar-le-Duc, France, 1993
La Galerie, Centre Multimédia , Liévin, France, 1993
Bibliothèque Municipale, Quimper, France, 1993
Maison de la Culture, Bourges, France, 1993
Palais des Congrès, Grasse, France, 1993
L'Astrolabe, La Rochelle, France, 1992
Théâtre des Sources, Avignon, France, 1992
De Balie Theater, Amsterdam, Netherlands, 1991
Centre Culturel Algérien, Paris, France, 1991
Espace Culturel Juliette Drouet, Fougères, France, 1991
Galerie l'Art à la Page, Paris, France, 1991
Palais de l'UNESCO, Paris, France, 1990
L'Arsenal, Metz, France, 1990
ARIAP Galerie des Beaux-Arts, Lille, France, 1990
Château de Trousse-Barrière, Briare le Canal, France, 1990
Salle Al Amane, Casablanca, Morocco, 1989
A.R Galerie Art Contemporain, Brest, France, 1989
La Maison des Congrès, Clermont-Ferrand, France, 1988
Bibliothèque Max-Paul Fouchet, Givors, France, 1988
Maison des Jeunes et de la Culture, Neuville-sur-Saône, France, 1988
Soeterijntheater, Amsterdam, Netherlands, 1988
Galerie/librairie La Marge, Ajaccio, France, 1988
Centre Culturel Français, Constantine, Algeria, 1987
Bibliothèque Municipale, Lille, France, 1987
Maison de la Mutualité, Rezé, France, 1987
Galerie de Lappe, Paris, France 1988
Espace Kiron, Paris, France, 1987
Maison des Jeunes et de la Culture, Colombes, France, 1986
Palais des Arts, Brest, France, 1986
Stedelijke Musea, Gouda, Netherlands, 1986
Signe et Calligraphie, Musée des Arts d'Afrique et d'Océanie, Paris, France, 1986
Westfries Museum, Hoorn, Netherlands, 1986
Maison des Jeunes et de la Culture des Orions, Tourcoing, France, 1986
Galerie Al Iwan, Kuwait, 1986
Mairie du 1er arrondissement, Lyon, France, 1985
Bibliothèque Municipale, Sarcelles, France, 1985
Bibliothèque Municipale, Echirolles, France 1985
Salon Inter Art, Saidia , Morocco, 1984
Orient Galerie, Paris, France, 1984
Musée Régional, Sarreguemine, France, 1984
Centre Culturel, Athis-Mons, France, 1983
Maison des Arts et de la Culture, Créteil, France, 1982
Bibliothèque Municipale, Pierrefitte, France, 1982
Musée des Beaux-Arts, Pau, France, 1981
Maison des Jeunes et de la Culture, La Celle-Saint-Cloud, France, 1981
Maison des Jeunes et de la Culture, Colombes, France, 1981
Maison Pour Tous, Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines, France, 1980


Ayman Elsemary

Born Kafr Shukr-Kalubia, Egypt, 1965
M.A., painting, Helwan University, Egypt, 1995
Ph.D., art education, painting department, Helwan University, Egypt, 2001
The faculty of art education
Member, Cairo & Alexandria Atelier for Artists & Writers
Member, Plastic Artists Syndicate

Selected Solo Exhibitions

Alexandria International Symposium, Sculpture in Natural Materials, Egypt, 2008
Townhouse On Site gallery, Sequoia, Zamalek, Egypt, 2007
Ebdaa Art Gallery, Mohandeseen, Giza, Egypt, 2007
The American University in Cairo, Egypt, 2007
Gezira Art Center , Zamalek, Cairo, Egypt, 2006
Albertini Academy, Torino, Italy, 2005
The Egyptian and Swiss flat countries with artist Romano Delakezia, Mashrabia Gallery, Cairo, Egypt, 2004
Chamber drawings sequences, Zamalek Arts Complex, Cairo, Egypt, 2003
Ekhnaton 1 Gallery, Zamalek, Cairo, Egypt, 2003
The Egyptian Academy in Rome, Italy, 2002
Kamal Khalifa Gallery, Gezira Art Center, Zamalek, Cairo, Egypt, 2002
Chamber drawings, Zamalek Arts Complex, Cairo, Egypt, 2001
Installation, Cairo Atelier, Zamalek Arts Complex, Egypt, 2001
Ekhnaton 3 Gallery, Gezira Art Center, Zamalek, Cairo, Egypt, 2000
Chamber drawings, Zamalek Arts Complex, Cairo, Egypt, 1999
The Greek Cultural Corporation Gallery, Alexandria, Egypt, 1999
Chamber drawings, Cairo Atelier, Zamalek Arts Complex, Egypt, 1997
Ekhnaton 3 Gallery, Gezira Art Center, Zamalek, Cairo, Egypt, 1997
Myth sequences, Zamalek Arts Complex, Cairo, 1996
Cairo Atelier, Zamalek Arts Complex, Egypt,1995
Sports Club gallery, Kafr Shukr, Egypt, 1995
Earth mythology, Zamalek Arts Complex, Cairo, Egypt, 1994
Sports Club gallery, Kafr Shukr, Egypt, 1986

Selected Group Exhibitions

The Present Out of the Past Millennia—Contemporary Egyptian Art, Kunstmuseum, Bonn, Germany, 2007
The Venice Biennale, 2007
Imagining the Book, International Biennial Alexandria, Bibliotheca Alexandria, Egypt, 2006
Contemporary Egyptian art, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, 2006
Contemporary Egyptian art, Algeria, 2006
Contemporary Egyptian art, Prague, Czech Republic, 2005
Imagining the Book, International Biennial Alexandria, Bibliotheca Alexandria, Egypt 2005
Form through Light, Ramadan, Palace of Art, Cairo, 2004
Imagining the Book, International Biennial Alexandria, Bibliotheca Alexandria, Egypt, 2004
Alexandria International Biennial, The Museum of Fine Arts, Alexandria, Egypt, 2003
Portrait, Bibliotheca Alexandria, Egypt, 2003
Twentieth-Century Panorama—100 artists in Egypt, Bibliotheca Alexandria, Egypt, 2003
Contemporary Egyptian art, Al-Nitaq Festival of Art, Gresham Hotel, Cairo, Egypt, 2002
National exhibition, Palace of Art, Cairo, Egypt, 2001
Al-Nitaq Festival of Art, The Greek Club, Cairo, Egypt, 2000
Workshop in Luxor studios, Egypt, 2000
Espace Karim Francis Contemporary Art Gallery, Cairo, Egypt, 2000
The International Dubrovnik Biennial, Croatia, 1999
Shell Company Gallery, Misr el-Gedida, Egypt, 1998
Cairo International Biennial, Egypt, 1998
T-shirt, Mashrabia Gallery, Cairo, Egypt, 1998
Cairo International Biennial in Ceramics, Egypt, 1998
Zeno X Gallery, Frankfurt, Germany, 1998
Cairo Atelier Salon, Egypt, 1997
Mashrabia Gallery, Cairo, Egypt, 1997
Youth Salon, 2nd to 10th, salons, Cairo, Egypt, beginning in 1990
National Exhibition, Center of Arts, Cairo Egypt, 1996
Alexandria Atelier, Egypt, 1994

Participation

Eighteenth Youth Salon, Cairo, Egypt, 2006
Graphic workshop in conjunction with national exhibition of graphic art, Palace of Art, Cairo, Egypt, 2005
Workshop on the contemporary Egyptian painting, Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudia Arabia, 2004
Jury member, 16th Youth Salon, Cairo, Egypt, 2004
The fourth Conference of Plastic Arts, thesis titled Contemporary Egyptian Art and Postmodern Arts, Egypt, 2004
The international workshop for Imagining the Book, 120 international artists, Bibliotheca Alexandria, Egypt, 2003

Awards

Honor prize and bronze medal, Alexandria Biennial, Egypt, 2003
The best partition prize, International Dubrovnik Biennial, Croatia, 1999
The jury prize, installation, 10th Youth Salon, Cairo, Egypt, 1998
Second prize, painting, 9th Youth Salon, 1997
Grand prize, International Union for Plastic Arts Critiques (AIKA), scholarship for three months in art studios in Rotterdam, The Netherlands, 1997
Grand prize (Golden Ekhnaton), 7th Youth Salon, Cairo, Egypt, 1995

Collections

The Museum of Modern Art, Cairo, Egypt
Cultural development box, 2000
Private collection, Germany, 2008


Ali Hassan

Born Doha, Qatar, 1956
Studied history, Qatar University, 1982 and 1984
Workshop, Arabic and Islamic Restoration Legacy, University of Louvain, Belgium
Chairman, Youth Creative Art Centre and Girls' Creativity Art Centre, Doha, Qatar, 2004 to 2008

Selected Solo Exhibitions

The Japan Foundation Forum, Tokyo, Japan, 2003
Bissan Gallery, Doha, Qatar, 2001 and 2005
The National Gallery, 2004
Fashion Arts Association, Kuwait, 2000
The National Centre for Arabic Arts Calligraphy, Tunisia, 2000
Festival Palace, Cannes, France, 1992
Qatar University, Doha, 1987

Selected Group Exhibitions

Deborah Colton Gallery, Houston, Texas, 2008
Galerie Kashya Hildebrand, Zurich, Switzerland, 2008
British Museum Collection, Dubai Market for the Arts, 2008
Albareh Art Gallery, Adliya, Kingdom of Bahrain, 2007
ArtParis Abu Dhabi Modern and Contemporary Art Fair, United Arab Emirates, 2007
Contemporary Gulf Art, Bonn, Germany, 2005
Contemporary Arabic Art, Spain, 2003-2004
The 10th International India Triennial, New Delhi, 2001
New York, Hofstra Museum, Hofstra University, Hempstead, New York, 1996
The Asian Art Biennial, Dhaka, Bangladesh, 1986-1997
International Cairo Ciennial, Egypt, 1984-1998

Selected Awards

State Award for Plastic Art, Doha, Qatar, 2005
Appreciation Award, Print Triennial, Egypt, 2003
Al Dana Award, Kuwait, 2000
Merit Award, UNICEF, 1995
Jury prize, Sharjah Art Biennial, United Arab Emirates, 1993
Golden Palm Award, Gulf Cooperation Council Art Exhibition, Qatar, 1992-1999

Public Collections

Los Angeles District Museum
The British Museum, London, United Kingdom
Chuan Art Museum
Jordanian National Gallery of Fine Arts
Sharjah Art Museum, United Arab Emirates
Qatar National Museum
The Museum of Modern Arab Art, Doha, Qatar
Museum of Contemporary Graphic Art, Cairo, Egypt
The Ritz Carlton
The Sheraton
The Four Seasons
The Al Bustan
The Marriott Hotel


Ahmad Moualla

Born Syria, 1958
Graduate, Visual Communication, Faculty of Fine Arts, Damascus University, Syria, 1981
Graduate, École Nationale Supérieure des Arts Décoratifs, Paris, France, 1981
Professor, Faculty of Fine Arts, Damascus University, Syria, 1989-1996

Selected Solo Exhibitions

Ahmad Moualla's Orient, Sultan Gallery, Kuwait, 2008
An Homage to Antoine Maqdessi and Antoine Al-Jammal, Art House Gallery, Damascus, Syria, 2007
Al Riwaq Gallery, Bahrain, 2007
Ahmad Moualla, Artist Gallery, Istanbul, Turkey, 2006
Clay, Country Exhibition, the German Cultural Institute (Goethe Institut), Damascus, Syria, 2004
Private exhibition, National Board of Culture, Art & Literature, Kuwait, 2001
An Homage to Saadallah Wannous, Bahrain National Museum, 1998
Private Experimentations, Green Art Gallery, Dubai, United Arab Emirates, 1998
An Homage to Saadallah Wannous, Atassi Gallery, Damascus, Syria, 1997
Painting of Ra's Al Mamluk Jabir Book, UNESCO, Paris, France, 1996
Remains of a Human Combustion, Brazil Café, Cham Palace Hotel, Damascus, Syria, 1996-1997
Miró in Three Dimensions, French Cultural Center, Damascus, Syria, 1994-1995
Trials in Colors, French Cultural Center, Damascus, Syria, 1993-1994
Experimentations, Mar Gallery, Latakia, Syria, 1990
Experimentations, Atassi Gallery, Homs, Syria, 1990
Experimentations, Bilad Al-Cham Gallery, Aleppo, Syria, 1990
Experimentations, Bilad Al-Cham Gallery, Damascus, Syria, 1990
Syria Ahmad Moualla, Urnina Gallery, Damascus, Syria, 1988

Selected Group Exhibitions

Retrospective of Fine Arts in Syria III, Damascus, 2008
Syria's Modern Art, Souk Waqef Gallery, Qatar, 2008
Beyond Words, Galerie Kashya Hildebrand, Zurich, Switzerland, 2008
Stiria Meet Syria, Neo Gallery, Gratz, Austria, 2007
Even War Has Its Limits and Women and War, exhibitions by the Red Cross, Damascus, Syria, and Geneva, Switzerland, 2001-2002
A Glimpse at Modern Arab Art, Kindah Group, Arab World Institute, Paris, France, 2002
Modern Syrian Art, Arab World Institute, Paris, France, 2001
Experience in Old Cairo with an invitation from The International Critique Association
Experimental-critique seminar about Kom Ghourab, Cairo, Egypt, 1996
Cairo International Biennale, Egypt, 1996
Sharjah Biennale, artistic workshops and participation, 1995
World Artists, an international exhibition visiting world capitals, 1995

Juries

Photographing the Mediterranean Sea Contest with the European Union, 2004
Graphic Biennale of the Islamic World, Tehran, Iran, 2004
Damascus International Film Festival, Syria, 2003
International Symposium, Emaar, Dubai, United Arab Emirates, 2003
Damascus International Exhibition: Lottery Card Contest, 2001-2007
Damascus International Exhibition: Best Poster Contest, 2001-2007
Think With Your Hand Contest, Cervantes Institute, Damascus, Syria, 1998
Gulf Cooperation Council Exhibition, 1996

Awards

Burda Prize (first prize), Arabic calligraphy (the modern method), Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, 2007
Grand Prize, Latakia Biennale, Syria, 1999
Best Outdoor Poster, Munich, Germany, 1988
First Prize, Kieler Woche Contest, Germany, 1988

Scenography, television
The Boxthorn, The Death Coming to the East, Al-Kawasser, Ser Al-Nawwar, Al-Zir Salem

Scenography, theatre
Man to Man, Voices of Depths, A Long Birthday Night, Kahrab, Sour Grapes, The Blinds

Scenography, film
Layla and the Wolf, Verbal Letters, Sandouq Al-Dunia (Box of the Universe), What the Audience Wants, Under the Ceiling, Dhulm (Years of Torment)

Publications
On Western Media Directed to Arab Countries, The Role of Media in Western Art


Georges Fikry Ibrahim

Born Heliopolis, Cairo, Egypt
Graduated with honors, Helwan University, Egypt, 1986
Demonstrator, art education, Helwan University, Egypt, 1987
M.A., art education, 1994
Assistant instructor, art education sciences, 2000
P.h.D., art education philosophy, 2000
Instructor, art education sciences, 2000
Assistant professor, art education, 2006

Selected Solo Exhibitions

The American University in Cairo, Egypt, 2007
Albertini Academy, Torino – Italy, 2005
Chamber drawings sequences, Zamalek Arts Complex , Cairo, Egypt, 2003
The Egyptian Academy in Rome, Italy, 2002
Chamber drawings, Zamalek Arts Complex, Cairo, Egypt, 2001
Chamber drawings, Zamalek Arts Complex, Cairo, Egypt, 1999
Chamber drawings, Cairo Atelier, Egypt, 1997
Myth sequences, Zamalek Arts Complex , Cairo, Egypt, 1996
Earth mythology, Zamalek Arts Complex, 1994

Selected Group Exhibitions

Masterpieces Collective, Zamalek Art Gallery, Cairo, Egypt, 2009
International Dakar Biennial, Senegal, 2008
Venice Biennale, Egyptian Pavilion, Italy, 2007
Contemporary Egyptian art, Alicante, Spain, 2007
Contemporary Egyptian art, Kunstmuseum Bonn, Germany, 2007
El Arousa, Ahmed Shawki Museum, Cairo, Egypt, 2007
Contemporary Egyptian art, Bosnia and Herzegovina, 2006
International Cairo Biennial, Egypt, 2006
Art and Soul, contemporary Egyptian and Korean art, Palace of Art, Cairo, Egypt, 2005
Egyptian Cultural Center in Rome, Italy, 2005
Twenty-ninth National Exhibition in Commemoration of 100 years of Egyptian Plastic Arts, nominated by the Ministry of Culture and faculty of art education Helwan University, Palace of Art, art education faculty, Cairo, Egypt, 2005
First International Alexandria Biennial for Artists' Book, Egypt, 2004
Stars' Salon, in conjunction with the sixth Youth Salon, Cairo, Egypt, 2004
Contemporary Egyptian art, in conjunction with the Frankfurt International Book Fair, Germany, 2004.
Silver Jubilee, celebrating the 25th anniversary of the Zamalek Arts Complex, Cairo, Egypt, 2002
Contemporary Egyptian art, Tunisia, 2001
Contemporary Egyptian art, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates, 2000
Commissioner of a contemporary Egyptian art and dialogue on the paradoxes of contemporary Egyptian art at the beginning of the 21st century, United Arab Emirates, 2000
Contemporary Egyptian art, Jordan, 1999.
Contemporary Egyptian art, Qatar, 1999
Dream mythology, Italian Cultural Center, Cairo, Egypt, 1997
Contemporary Egyptian art, Pakistan, 1997
Little Works Salon, Cairo, Egypt, 1998-2004
The National Exhibition for Fine Arts, Cairo, Egypt, 1997-2003
Contemporary Egyptian art, Vienna, Austria, 1995.
Homeland X 1 Society, Cairo, Egypt, 1993-1995
Youth Salon, Cairo, Egypt, 1989
Pioneers Exhibition, Cairo, Egypt, 1989-1995

Memberships

Plastic Arts Syndicate
Art Educators Union
Union of the Graduates of Art Education Higher Institute
Art and Artwork Instructors Union
Writes and Artists League, Cairo Atelier
Egyptian Society for Folklore Arts
National Society of Fine Arts
International Society of Education Through Art
Nation X 1 Society
Committee collecting and documenting information on Egyptian plastic arts
Suzanne Mubarak arbitration committee for children's literature
Egyptian section, International Association of Art
National Book Project Committee

C-Arts
Press
C-Arts
Art Asia: Intriguing Western Outlook on the Asian Market April 2010

"ART ASIA has busied itself with establishing a reputation as the unchallenged focal point for contemporary Asian Art collectors in the U.S. Sundaram Tagore Gallery's curated show "SIGNS: Contemporary Arab Art" was well received by both visitors and collectors and was cited by Yolande Whitcomb, ART ASIA's global relations representative, as an example of "ART ASIA's commitment to representing a broad range of Asian art."

Contemporary Practices
Press
Contemporary Practices
Arab Art in Focus: A Short Survey November 2009

"For a long time the Arab art scene fell under the radar screen of the western world. Only a short three years ago, hardly anyone spoke of modern and contemporary art from Arab countries. But, lo and behold, it has now come into the range of the international art world [...] Signs – Contemporary Arab Art at Sundaram Tagore Gallery presents for the first time a selection of seven Arab artists. For all of them, calligraphy plays a vital role in their consciousness and their work."

Asian Art News
Press
Asian Art News
Elegance And Integrity November 2009

"Any exhibition of contemporary Arab art is an important step in creating inter-cultural dialogue and understanding beyond the prejudices that prevail about Arabs and Muslims. Signs: Contemporary Arab Art, featuring the work of seven contemporary artists and curated by Karin Adrian von Roques, at New York's Sundaram Tagore Gallery, is one such show."

Financial Times
Press
Financial Times
Guide Arts Around the World October 2009

"Signs: Contemporary Arab Art, opening on Wednesday at the Sundaram Tagore Gallery, displays the work of seven contemporary Middle Eastern artists, in particular their treatment of ancient Islamic art. Traditional calligraphy and symbols infuse the work of Qatari artist Yousef Ahmad, who distills Arabic letters into abstract shapes, while Syrian artist Khaled Al-Saa'i draws on Sufi philosophy, painting words into spacious landscapes."

The Gulf Today
Press
The Gulf Today
Signing on Middle East October 2009

"Signs: Contemporary Arab Art, a groundbreaking art exhibition from Sundaram Tagore galleries, New York, to run from October 14 to November 14 offers a rare glimpse into the Arab art world. The first of its kind in New York, the exhibition presents the work of seven influential artists from various countries in the Middle East"

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