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The Language of Human Consciousness


An upcoming exhibition this month by the Athr Gallery in Jeddah will be delivering the largest exhibition in Saudi Arabia on arts inspired by the study of geometry.

The Language of Human Conciousness - Athr Art Gallery

Dates and Timings

Jul 10 – Oct 10, 2014

Saturday to Thursday 9:00 am – 6:00 pm (Ramadan Time: 12 – 5 pm / 9.30 pm – 12 am)

Location

Athr Gallery

5th & RF Floors, Serafi Mega Mall, Tahlia St, Jeddah,

For thousands of years, the question of whether the basics of geometry came naturally to all humans or if they had to be taught; has been explored. According to Plato’s writings, Socrates attempted to determine how well an uneducated slave in a Greek household understood geometry, and eventually concluded that the slave’s soul ‘must have always possessed this knowledge’.

In the midst of startling havoc; humans by this very instinct seek to find order in this chaos, to reason with it; translating it to a language that is perhaps visual and universal is a common field of exploration for scientists and artists alike.

Athr Gallery will deliver a groundbreaking exhibition titled The Language of Human Consciousness in July 2014 and will include work by over 40 artists from around the world. Most of these artists will be exhibiting work for the first time in Saudi Arabia and the Middle East at large. To inaugurate the opening on July 10, Director of TATE Modern London, Chris Dercon will moderate a discussion with pioneering artists in the field.

Athr Gallery has established itself as a leading cultural institution, in which providing a platform for local Saudi artists is at its core. Through this exhibition – in which both local and international artists will be showcased side-by-side – the intended impact and potential benefits are twofold: establish an association between local Saudi artists and leading international artists, and provide an opportunity for the public to experience international culture through a local exhibition.

The Language of Human Consciousness takes geometry as a starting point, accepting its heritage as a symbol of purity, intelligence and perfection and bringing it towards a more contemporary interpretation as a language for exploring the atypical, the imperfect and the alternative. Works are brought together that seek to dissect segments of times, contexts and places and open them up to universal interpretation. The works, in the potency of the contradiction between their infinite possibilities as geometric compositions and the range of their references – social, political, art historical or other – are reduced to a neutral ground: to a human and conceivable form.

The exhibition will examine geometry in a comprehensive exhibition that showcases a multitude of applications in geometry. The dynamic exhibition will include sacred geometry as well as work that unconventionally utilizes geometry, an example of the latter would be the work of Sama Mara, who will present a series titled A Hidden Order, a culmination of several years of collaboration between composer Lee Westwood and artist Sama Mara; where they attempted to interpret music into a visual geometric form. To realise this ambitious exhibition, Athr Gallery has collaborated with over 20 leading galleries around the world – From Lisson Gallery in London to Galleria Continua in San Gimignano and The Third Line in Dubai.

Image and text courtesy of Athr Gallery

Roat ur Resalah: Beauty of the Message Art Expo


Roat ur Resalah, or Beauty of the Message, is an Annual Arabic calligraphy exhibition organised by the Consulate General of Pakistan, Jeddah, from 1 to 4 May 2014 at Red Sea Mall, Jeddah.

The timings are 11 am to 11 pm. Calligraphy workshops will also be arranged during exhibition. An event not to be missed.

Photo: Artists will be also be working live

Artists will be working live.

Roat ur Resalah is the name of this Art Expo which will exhibit vibrant and distinctive features of Islamic art as developed in various Arab and Islamic lands. The appeal of this art transcends time and space regardless of the country where it was created.

Calligraphy
Arabic script has been an important constituent of Islam’s cultural heritage. Among Muslims, the art of lettering is connected with religious emphasis on reading the scripture. With this emphasis, the artistic expression of Arabic script has attracted all segments of Muslim societies throughout centuries and across the Islamic world. Arabic script has been an important constituent of Islam’s cultural heritage. The understanding and appreciation of this form of art was not, however, limited to Muslims. In later centuries, the Christian kings of Europe used Arabic inscriptions and calligraphic designs to decorate their palaces, furniture and coins.

The exhibition will highlight the continuity of tradition of calligraphy which goes back to the time of Caliph Umar Ibn Khattab (May Allah be pleased with him) and Caliph Ali (May Allah be pleased with him). In various Islamic lands this tradition has been carefully nurtured and enriched, particularly in Pakistan where it constitutes country’s primary cultural identity and heritage.

Islamic Architecture

Majestic domes and minarets, ornamented pulpits of mosques and religious schools, palaces, courtyards, beautiful gardens with water fountains and fragrant roses, spacious caravanserais and tombs decorated with patterned brickwork, tile mosaic often in blue, golden and green, splendid molded mihrab facings with columnar bands of Quranic inscriptions, sophisticated geometrical and floral engravings and high ramparts. These features characterize magnificent Islamic architecture. Today, this architecture constitutes identity of Islamic civilization. The Art Expo will celebrate the glory of Islamic architecture in beautiful paintings.

Islamic Miniature

The origin of miniature art is attributed to the Umayyad doctors who had commissioned painters to develop illustrated training manuals for scientific explanations. Miniature illustrations were, inter alia, utilized to show important scenes as well as acts of war and peace in popular legends and stories such as Alf Laila wa Laila, Dastaan Amir Hamza, Qissa Yusuf Zulaikha etc. With the passage of time, miniature became an integral part of Arab, Persian, Turkic and Pakistan’s Islamic art traditions. In Pakistan, it has acquired the status of national art under the rubric of the Mughal Art. The Art Expo will showcase this cultural delicacy in its true colours and technique.

Furniture

In many Muslim lands, craftsmen treated wood as a precious resource. They learned to use small pieces of it to great artistic advantage, elaborating such techniques as carving and marquetry, in which a surface is entirely covered with little pieces of wood veneer laid side-by-side to form patterns. Roat ur Rasalah will showcase some of the exquisite pieces of furniture as developed in South and South East Asia.

 

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