segunda-feira, 17 de dezembro de 2012

Arte contemporânea árabe

"Machine 22", Sami Al-Turki
"Love", Ayman Yossri

«As recently as 25 years ago, the majority [arab artists] worked in relative isolation. The Arab world had a less developed pictorial tradition than many of its [neighbours]; its visual culture was lauded through architecture, tapestry and design rather than painting. Consequently its art was categorized by international cultural commentators as “backward”. The past decade, however, has witnessed a considerable shift in the practice and approach of artists from the region. [...]  It was in the 1990s that Arab artists, invigorated by the immediacy of global communications, began to deviate from painting and sculpture and venture into photography, video and installation art.

[...] As many of the region’s conflicts are ongoing, there is an expectation, most especially from audiences in the West, that contemporary Arab art must be political; that it must be reactive, gender-focused and highlight obsession and neglect. Although these are all concerns that surface with regularity and are treated sensitively, they are by no means its raison d’être.

[...]  Unlike  other emerging art markets where auction houses have led the way, disseminating information, creating transparency and setting benchmark prices, contemporary Arab art is nurtured by a growing network of regionally-based galleries, such as The Third Line in Dubai and Doha, Sfeir-Semler in Beirut and Hamburg, Athr in Jeddah, and Townhouse in Cairo. But those with an international profile such as Continua, whose spaces are in San Gimignano, Le Moulin and Beijing, and Vienna’s Galerie Krinzinger, are also signing up Arab artists.

[...] Perhaps it is contemporary politics that have rendered the art of the region more relevant and more accessible; continuous live coverage of events unfolding in Cairo, for example, infiltrated every living room in the world, while social networking, tmblrs, twitters and blogs have allowed hitherto unknown voices to be heard.»

Artigo "Creative foment", de Savita Apte, revista Think, Agosto de 2012 (aqui, em PDF)