Inspired by his passion for arts, Adgeco Chairman and Founder, Mohamed Dekkak attends Sharjah’s biggest art exhibit. A contemporary art event that transpires once every 2 years in the city of Sharjah, Sharjah Biennial has deepened the region’s cultural landscape by commissioning, delivering, and exhibiting a modern and unique art experience for the community in UAE and at the same time offering a globally recognized platform for the region’s exceptional artists.
Now on its 14th edition, Sharjah Biennial 14 will be showcasing 3 distinct exhibitions curated by Omar Kholeif, Zoe Butt and Claire Tancons. Entitled “Leaving the Echo Chamber,” the exhibition looks at history, migration, and changes in communities relating to fast technological developments in today’s information age.
The exhibition opens from March 7 until June 10, 2019, at Sharjah Art Foundation and will bring together large-scale public installations, major commissions, performances, and films.
The event which opened on Thursday, 7 March was graced by the presence of His Highness Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah and His Highness Sheikh Abdullah bin Salem bin Sultan Al Qasimi, Deputy Ruler of Sharjah.
Together with country leaders and dignitaries, President, and Director of Sharjah Art Foundation, Sheikha Hoor bint Sultan Al Qasim welcomed the Sharjah Ruler who was briefed about the 3 exhibitions and toured the exhibits as well which featured more than eighty recognized and rising artists coming from different parts of the world.
Attending at the event are important personalities like Minister of Culture and Knowledge Dev’t Noura bint Mohammed Al Kaabi, Minister of Health and Prevention Abdul Rahman bin Mohammed Al Owais, Head of the Amiri Diwan Rashid bin Ahmad Al Shaikh, Minister of State Zaki Anwar Nusseibeh. Also spotted are several department heads, Sharjah Executive Council members, institution directors, and diplomatic corps members and numerous art enthusiasts. Mr. Dekkak, who has supported several art events in the past conveys, “Arts help us express our values, build bridges between cultures, and brings in the spirit of tolerance.”
Leaving the Echo Chamber: Overview
In pop culture, the term ‘echo chamber’ is a nickname for indirect news media and their specialist channels, which are strengthened by a closed network managed and administered by private sources, enterprises, and government. It is additionally an illustration for the recorded predominance of capital and the social, cultural and political frameworks that manage its entrance, generation and delivery. Most substantially, the ‘echo chamber’ is an area where sound hits and resonates, where remembrance and creative ability reverberates through the surface, across time and space.
Leaving the Echo Chamber looks into putting into the discussion a progression of incitements on how one may renegotiate the structure, shape, and capacity of this chamber so as to move to the multiplication of the echoes inside, such vibrations speaking to the immense types of human creation—its traditions and beliefs.
SB14 asks visitors to think about various concerns. What did it mean to call for different images when the news is controlled by domineering sources? How would we grow our stories by recognizing what has been covered up or deleted? How might we ponder our own cultural narratives in a period when such a large number of people have been compelled to trust that they should surrender their very own organization to the domination that exists and rule our reality?
Artists at Sharjah Biennial 14 are given the chance to share narrations that echo in various ways, along these lines making new surfaces for a variety of chambers that uncover various and multifaceted methods for survival, connection and keeping collective humankind.
Curatorial Overview and Participating Artists
Kholeif, Butt, and Tancons bring incredible perspectives to the questions that haunt our today’s society. Together, they represented the complexities of challenges faced by today’s artists and community as a whole.”
Here’s the list of artists taking part in each of the 3 curated exhibitions:
- “Journey Beyond the Arrow”
Curator – Zoe Butt, the artistic director of Ho Chi Minh City’s Factory of Contemporary Arts Centre
Journey Beyond the Arrow presents profound perspective to humanity’s movement and the things that have supported or deterred its survival. From religious traditions to cultural practices, technological advances to the rule of law. Every practice utilizing objects and actions that continuously move in intentional and unintentional guides of discovery, triumph, and exile throughout land and ocean. The exhibition aims to enlighten the importance of exchange and diversity throughout the world and man’s history.
Participating artists: Kidlat Tahimik, Khadim Ali, Nalini Malani, Meiro Koizumi, Tuan Andrew Nguyen, Lisa Reihana, Ahmad Fuad Osman, Ho Tzu Nyen,
- “Making New Time”
Curator – Omar Kholeif, senior curator and director of global initiatives of the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago
Our time today is a period of constant speed that we hardly have time to breathe. Remember that time is one that cannot be retrieved, uncertain and continued process of existing in the world. But changes in technology, social and politics has changed the ways by which we connect to things and in the concept of history itself. How do we slow down and go through the experience? How do we create ‘new time’?
This seeks to present the way material culture can be re-visualized through the eyes of artists whose unbelievable reflections pushes us to go beyond the limits of our beliefs. It thinks of the ways economies are shaped around industrial culture, how stories are created and taken apart, and how the power of change empowers a reformation, or restoration, of the past lost or even unknown.
Participating artists: Lubaina Himid, Huguette Caland, Barbara Kasten, Otobong Nkanga, Marwan, Akram Zaatari, Jon Rafman,
- “Look for Me All Around You”
Curator – Claire Tancons, curator and art historian
Look for Me All Around You is an open display of migrant representations and fugitive forms. Comprised of several scores drawn from the many scales of Sharjah as city, emirate and prominent territory.
The platform demonstrates to the alternatively dispossessed and repossessed disposition of diasporization as an aporetic phenomenon of the contemporary, encompassing man, material and semantic forms of displacement.
Participating artists: Caline Aoun, Nikolaus Gansterer, Aline Baiana, Isabel Lewis, Eisa Jocson, Ulrik López, Wu Tsang, Carlos Martiel
Sharjah Art Foundation
Founded in 2009 to develop programs beyond the Sharjah Biennial, which was introduced in 1993, the Sharjah Art Foundation is an important source for artists and cultural organizations in the Gulf region and a channel for national, regional and global advancements in contemporary art.
The director of the Sharjah Art Foundation, Hoor Al Qasimi, said in a statement that our present-day life is taken over by competing for information and inconsistent histories—a reality that raises vital questions on the path of contemporary art, as well as the conditions in which it is made.
Reiterating the message of the foundation director, Mohamed Dekkak acknowledges the importance of knowing where contemporary art is heading. He also states, “Contemporary art and exhibitions like this do more than what we actually realize. It holds up a mirror to science, to our way of life, and society. There has never been a time where art is more important than it is now.”