Here at the Lahd Gallery we are all for celebrating the unique artworks of MENASA artists all over the world and are proud to have been involved in the recent Singapore Art fair – the first of its kind in the country.
The Singapore Art Fair was created to showcase modern and contemporary art from the Middle East, North Africa and Southeast Africa, providing a window to the region’s history, culture and politics.
What is the Singapore Art Fair?
The Singapore Art Fair, which opened from 27th – 30th November 2014, is the first art fair in Asia to showcase modern and contemporary art from the Middle East, North Africa and Southeast Asia. The inaugural edition of the event attracted 59 galleries (including Lahd Gallery) from twenty two different countries and showcased the work of two hundred and thirty international artists. Lahd Gallery was the only representative of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia proving to be once again ‘Pioneers in MENASA contemporary art’.
The purpose of the Singapore Art Festival
The purpose was to teach people about the region’s history and illustrate the changes it has undergone over the years using works of art. It was split into three pavilions: the Middle East / North Africa pavilion, the Lebanese Pavilion and the Dato’ Ibrahim Hussein Pavilion in order to reflect the different cultures and help visitors understand the historical and political struggles of those living in the regions, from the artists’ perspectives.
Lahd Gallery artists George, Hend, Wadia, Anas and Noura have all been chosen by the panel as wonderful additions to the fair, in addition to our very own Anan Al-Olayan whose stunning piece of artwork ‘Hearts Blossoming’ was chosen as one of the works representative of the fair and its theme.
Hearts Blossoming is a beautiful piece of mixed media that celebrates Saudi Arabian women in all their complexity. Al-Olayan bases her work around the word ‘Malika’ which means Queen in Arabic and offers a contemporary view on what it stands for. Despite being ‘queens,’ in the past Malikas were treated very poorly and refused many of the basic rights, which so many of us take for granted today. Through her artwork, Anan Al-Olayan provides an alternative representation of the Malika, as a woman with power and control over her own mind and body.
In many of her works, only the eyes of the Malikas can be seen but it is their eyes that provide a window to their souls and tell their stories. As a piece with historical and culture meaning, Hearts Blossoming was the perfect fit for the Singapore Art Fair.
Other aspects of the Singapore Art Fair
As well as showcasing the beautiful works of art of many new and internationally renowned artists, the Singapore Art Fair also featured various different performances and educational talks in keeping with the theme. The artwork a long with the accompanying events attracted visitors young and old and was deemed a huge success.
Roger Moukarzel, world-renowned Lebanese photographer and videographer, at his video art performance World Premiere “So Far, So Close”. Here, he shared his interpretation of the vast ME.NA.SA with its multiple and contrasting cultures.
The future looks promising
After much triumph, we are certain that there will be more Singapore Art Fairs in the future. According to the founder and director of the fair, Laure d’Hauteville, the country hopes to become ‘a springboard for young and established artists to be discovered.’
We were delighted to have the opportunity to participate in the Singapore Art Fair, gaining popularity, selling artworks and meeting wonderful people and hope to have even more of our wonderful and talented artists showcasing at future events in the Asian continent.
Founder and director of the fair, Laure d’Hauteville with H.H Dr. Nauf AlBendar and MP Baey Yam Keng when visiting Lahd Gallery’s Booth C10
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