By Maha Alsharif

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Bashar Alhroub, “NeoPalestine”, 2018, Installation, 140 x 70 x 12 cm. © Bashar Alhroub.

Artist Bashar Alhroub looks for freedom through his practice. He draws from his background and personal experiences to outline a metaphysical existence in terms of socio-political constructs that continue to distract and dictate human abilities, goodness, and consciousness. In his work, he combines visual and conceptual elements to create layers of meaning that challenge the viewer and encourage critical thinking and action.

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Installation view: Bashar Alhroub, “War & Desire”, 2018. © Bashar Alhroub.

A cultural and a spiritual nomad, who was born and raised in Palestine, Alhroub was subject to unique experiences that elevated both his awareness and anxiety about attachment, identity, belonging, and existence. The result is a deep appreciation for the moment accompanied by existential anxiety, that together motivate him to explore issues holistically, taking into account a compound of factors that lead to certain understandings or states, yet always at risk of change. This mentality sneaks into his creativity, in that there is no constant medium, style, subject, identity or truth; everything becomes interchangeable. …


By Maha Alsharif

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Debjani Bhardwaj, “Nocturnal Games”, 2018, Wood, fabricated iron sheet, and digital print on paper, 51.2 (H) x 60 (Diameter) cm.

Returning with her second solo exhibition at Tashkeel, artist Debjani Bhardwaj presents “Telling Tales”, a seemingly obscure presentation that unfolds layers from Emirati and Omani heritage. Developed over the past months with the support of Tashkeel’s Critical Practice Program, the exhibition presents the artist’s take on the rarely articulated, yet dense, subject of Arabian folktales. The project was realised through experimentation with various paper-cutting techniques, conceptual research and guidance, and an intuitive fascination with organic material, playfulness and storytelling. Bhardwaj then simply lets the audience enter a multi-sensory open-ended narrative that is activated through curiosity, engagement and play.

Storytelling and narrative are a major influence on Bhardwaj’s creative process and practice. Not only is it an important traditional element from both her country of origin (India) and country of residence (Oman), but also an element embedded within her making process, as she allows the material to unravel new stories, possibilities, and meanings. The artist says “my work has always been about storytelling. As far as I can remember. I’m either telling stories of myself, experiences that I have had, my fears, my dreams, my nightmares… Always looking at the world through my eyes, and changing it a bit. It’s a reflection of how I perceive things”. For instance, In her 2011 exhibition “Spindle Shuttle Needle”, she presented illustrations of personal experiences inspired by the phrase spinning yarn, which implies telling fabricated stories that are part truth part fiction, and so blurring the line between imagination and reality; as well as lines between the artist, the artwork, and the viewer. …


By Maha Alsharif

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Installation view: Crossings (3/3): Touching Alterity (A Latent Anatomy). © Shirin Fathi

When visiting a historical site, we often wonder “if these walls could talk”. We consider the architecture, the objects and the traditions that surrounded and outlived the humans who gave it life, and then create our own understanding of a certain moment in history. Nonetheless our curiosity remains wishing to hear an honest account of how that time felt. In her latest collaborative exhibition with computational artist Vytas Niedvaras, “Crossings (3/3): Touching Alterity (A Latent Anatomy)”, MH Sarkis reflects from the future on personal experiences with the body, human relationships and power dynamics, gender, and tradition.

The project, which was realised through an invitation from the London based curatorial collective To Whom This May Concern, does not divert from previous themes explored by the artist. For nearly a decade and since the beginning of her practice with painting and video art, Sarkis has consistently tackled the subjects of physical, emotional, and cultural identity using her own body, psyche, and experiences as points of reference to start a dialogue on broader issues. Now experimenting with new unconventional material and interactive presentation methods, the artist finds herself in an ongoing process to preserve humanness through art. …

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The Art Cricket

Quite the critic… The Art Cricket is an independent blog made by young art professionals and enthusiasts around the world. The blog aims to document art eve

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