Hassan Sharif | 1951 - 2016September 19, 2016
We remember the life and artistic legacy of Hassan Sharif who passed away on Sunday, September 18, 2016 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates at the age of 65 years old.
Sharif's exact date of birth is unknown, nor did it really matter to him. He didn't put stock in conventions of age, identity or the need for comfort. Only art and the restless making of art grasped his attention. He was a prolific cultural producer and facilitator, moving between roles as artist, educator, critic, activist, and mentor.
His career as an artist began in Dubai and Sharjah in the 1970s, working as a satirical caricaturist, highlighting a rapidly changing United Arab Emirates at the dawn of its formation. In 1979, Sharif is awarded a scholarship to the United Kingdom where he studied at the Byam Shaw School of Art and returned five years later to the UAE, with the goal of establishing an art practice and building an audience for contemporary art in the Gulf region. The young country was an unlikely setting for an artist with a taste for provocation but his work found exactly the resistance that stimulated him. With determination, Sharif began a life-long pursuit to expand the definitions of art and the role of artists.
For his earliest experimental work of the 1980s, Sharif brought friends to the edges of Dubai and they were the audience for his performances - jumping in the desert, tying rope between rocks - using apparently simple gestures to pointedly question ideals of technical skill, mastery, and accomplishment. Always questioning the functional and the useless, the found and the created, he transformed consumer products and waste into complex assemblages and weavings in his ongoing series "Objects". In these works, Sharif raised concerns about consumerism and social order, the human body and the physical evidence of our times. He was fascinated by the errors and flaws that arise in rigid systems, utilizing them in his large body of "Semi-system" drawings. Across his diverse work, he believed that flaws in such systems are ultimately creative ruptures.
Internationally recognized as a pioneer of conceptual art and experimental practice in the Middle East, Sharif served as a colleague and mentor to generations of Emirati artists. He believed that art was not only practice to be expanded and shared, but also a catalyst for community. In the early 1980's, he founded the Al Marijah Art Atelier in Sharjah, and was a founding member of the Emirates Fine Art Society and of the Art Atelier in the Youth Theater and Arts, Dubai. In 2005, he was one of four artists to establish The Flying House, a Dubai art space dedicated to promoting contemporary Emirati artists. The first Emirati to have his work shown in the Arab Museum of Modern Art in Doha, Qatar, Sharif was also among the selected artists to represent the U.A.E. during its first national pavilion at the Venice Biennale in 2009. Sharif's artwork is included in the collections of the Centre Pompidou, Paris; M+ Museum, Hong Kong; Mathaf: Arab Museum of Modern Art, Doha, Qatar; the Sharjah Art Foundation, Sharjah, U.A.E.; the Barjeel Art Foundation, Sharjah, U.A.E.; the Sittard Center, The Netherlands; and Guggenheim Abu Dhabi, U.A.E., and Guggenheim, New York, U.S.A.
Hassan Sharif will be remembered for his gentle and generous spirit and his playful attitude. The legacy of his artistic journey will inspire artists and audiences, having left an indelible mark on Middle Eastern art history and the global art world.
Abdelkader BenchammaAnother world (((in our world))) June 12, 2016
2 June - 16 July
Galerie du jour, Paris
Another world (((in our world))) is a comprehensive exploration of fields of learning on the frontiers of science, tradition, science fiction, the fantastic and, in fine, the real. It reactivates a quest for wisdom aiming to transcend the apparent contradiction between materialism and spiritualism, positing an ontology of the mystery based on an interdisciplinary approach at the crossroads of art and technology, transhumanism and shamanism, alchemy and nanotechnology, esotericism and quantum physics, the demonstrable and the imaginary. Focusing on the notion of fantastic realism, as laid out by Louis Pauwels and Jacques Bergier in Le matin des magiciens (The Morning of the Magicians, 1960) and Planète (Planet), the book's spinoff periodical, Another world (((in our world))) seeks to revitalize the concept and bring it to new audiences in a hybrid event-part-group exhibition, part-colloquium, part-laboratory for epistemological experimentation.
Zoulikha BouabdellahLoop Art Fair, Barcelona June 2, 2016
2 – 4 June
Zoulikha Bouabdellah participates in Loop Art Fair in Barcelona and presents Envers/Endroit (Obverse/Reverse), which consists of an overlay, in the same plane, of scenes inspired by paintings that made a mark on Art History: Olympia by Edouard Manet, 1863, Gabrielle d'Estrées and One of her Sisters by an unknown artist from the School of Fontainebleau, 1594, and The Three Graces by Raphael, 1505. This juxtaposition of details from different paintings creates a visual dynamic in which feet meet a hand, sponging a leg, that itself seems to caress the cheek of a sleeping woman.
Mohammed KazemArtist in Residence May 12, 2016
Seoul Art Space, Geumcheon
12 May - 23 June
Mohammed Kazem will take part in a six-week residency at Seoul Art Space in collaboration with Maraya Art Centre, during which Kazem will also participate in Geumcheon's Open Studios exhibitions.
Seoul Art Space is a creative space dedicated to visual art, remodeled in October 2009 from an old print works located in Doksan-dong. It provides the local community with an opportunity to enjoy culture through its various programmes. 130 visual artists (or teams) from 24 countries have moved in since it opened. Its programme includes exhibitions, workshops shared with with students and residents, and open studios. Maraya Art Centre's residency programme is designed to support emerging and mid-career contemporary UAE artists and designers. Working with institutions internationally, Maraya sends UAE-based artists overseas and hosts up to three residents per year.
Ramin Haerizadeh, Rokni Haerizadeh, Hesam RahmanianLiverpool Biennial 2016 May 8, 2016
9 July - 16 October 2016
Ramin Haerizadeh, Rokni Haerizadeh and Hesam Rahmanian have been commissioned to create a series of installations, performances and sculptures for Liverpool Biennial 2016. This will be realised through a wide range of media permeating throughout the city, with artwork revolving around the question "What if?", creating new narratives as audiences explore Liverpool Biennial. At Cains Brewery, they will create work on-site, using 'smuggled' objects shipped from Dubai to Liverpool by container.
Ramin Haerizadeh, Rokni Haerizadeh, Hesam RahmanianFrieze New York | Covered the Fingernails in Petals of Dahlia May 5, 2016
Focus, Booth A16
Randall's Island Park, New York
5 - 8 May
We are pleased to announce our participation in Frieze New York with Ramin Haerizadeh, Rokni Haerizadeh and Hesam Rahmanian, where the conquering folds of a new work imagined by the Iranian artist trio have transformed the New York Times-published Obama: The Historic Journey (2009) into a tale of our times. An onslaught of tropes sprung from globalized corporate visual culture, collaged onto the individually traced pages of the original book, cast a silhouetted Obama as the ultimate business manager. Strategies of concealing and revealing unfold across these pages, as the original images peer out from behind the masking of collaged imagery. The 27 drawings are excerpted moments from the wider sequence, freeze-framed and contemplated-a glimpse of the curtain being lifted on a largely unfathomable collaborative creation that ultimately seems to be the product of a sole hand.
Zoulikha BouabdellahObjets de desir May 4, 2016
Sabrina Amrani Gallery, Madrid
Until 3 June
We are pleased to announce Zoulikha Bouabdellah's third solo show at Sabrina Amrani gallery. In Objets de désir, Bouabdellah explores the space between the desire to possess and the object of desire itself. The object of desire does not exist in itself, but is its inaccessibility that gives value to it. The aura vanishes in the moment the object of desire is accessed, the platonic love is metabolised into a body, the fetish is emptied of meaning.
Mohammed KazemHonolulu Biennial April 24, 2016
Honolulu, Hawaii, USA
Curated by Fumio Nanjo
We are pleased to announce Mohammed Kazem's participation in the inaugural Honolulu Biennial, which will be curated by Mori Art Museum's Fumio Nanjo and opens in Spring 2017.
The Honolulu Biennial Foundation (HBF) supports the local arts infrastructure with a global outreach and launches the Honolulu Biennial next year, which marks Hawaii's first entry into the international biennial circuit. The first edition of the Honolulu Biennial will focus on art from the Pacific, the Asian continent and the Americas. Throughout the year, HBF serves the local community by presenting educational outreach programs with an emphasis on programming for Hawaii's youth, focused on STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math), as well as exhibitions for the local arts community.
Hassan Sharif, Haleh Redjaian and Rokni HaerizadehART BRUSSELS April 22, 2016
22 - 24 April
Tour & Taxis, Brussels, Belgium
Prime Booth B50
We are pleased to announce our participation in Art Brussels with a prime booth featuring works by Emirati artist Hassan Sharif and German-Iranian artist Haleh Redjaian, where a formal comparison will be drawn between the 3D weaving techniques and works on paper by both artists. The booth will be an investigation of Sharif and Redjaian's critical approach of using the grid as a measurement tool and foundation for their composition, allowing for chance and repetition.
Solo Booth B50-S
The solo booth will centre on a video animation Letter! (2014) by Iranian artist Rokni Haerizadeh, which uses footage from a Femen protest, and shows how the protest is turned into its own hysterical, violent and performative spectacle once the gaze of the media is present. Haerizadeh refers to his videos as 'moving paintings' to emphasise the pulse of the video. He purposely doesn't refer to them as animations as he's not tracing a movement between frames, instead, each movement is enacted in these individual hand-painted frames to create an erratic pulse, and also merges thousand of individual paintings into one durational piece.
Hassan SharifEmbodying | Published by Sharjah Art Foundation April 21, 2016
Hassan Sharif and Cristiana de Marchi's book Embodying, reflects on Sharif's early performances, each corresponding to 29 poems by de Marchi, where she is narrating and animating, almost bringing these documented performances back to life. In the early 1980s and 1990s, Sharif carried out a series of performances without an audience and had them photographed in colour or black and white by close friends or other artists. This documentation of the artist's movements shows how pointless and meaningless these actions and mundane activities appear to be when taken out of context.
ROKNI HAERIZADEH AND MOHAMMED KAZEMBut a Storm is Blowing from Paradise April 21, 2016
Guggenheim, New York, USA
Curated by Sara Raza
29 April - 5 October
But a Storm is Blowing from Paradise is the third exhibition of the Guggenheim UBS MAP Global Art Initiative and borrows its title from the 24 recently-acquired drawings by Haerizadeh. The exhibition illuminates contemporary artistic practices in the Middle East and North Africa and the region's diaspora by presenting a selection of newly acquired works for the Guggenheim's permanent collection. Kazem will participate with a large scroll work, entitled Scratches on Paper, which was also part of the 12th Sharjah Biennial. Following its presentation in New York, the exhibition will travel to Istanbul's Pera Museum in 2017.
MOHAMMED KAZEM AND HASSAN SHARIFPortrait of a Nation April 11, 2016
Emirates Palace, Abu Dhabi, UAE
11 April - 10 May
Mohammed Kazem and Hassan Sharif participate in Portrait of a Nation, a group exhibition celebrating the 20 years of Abu Dhabi Music and Arts Foundation (ADMAF) and featuring works by 50 Emirati artists. Divided in seven different thematic areas, the works explore topics of Nation and Unity, Geography and Nature, Architecture and Urbanism, Portraiture and Identity, Religion and Spirituality, Language and Calligraphy, and Tradition and Heritage. The exhibition captures the ever-changing face of the visual arts in the United Arab Emirates through a work from Sharif's Objects, which are sculptural assemblages constructed from mass-produced materials and created via random and arbitrary rules, and Kazem's performative work Photographs with a Flag, in which the artist stands next to small flags that neither represent countries, corporations or institutions, but are merely pieces of cloth in different colours, set into a space of ground in Dubai's Al Mamzar area.
Hassan SharifAlexander Gray Associates, New York, USA April 7, 2016
7 April - 14 May 2016
Hassan Sharif presents a solo show at New York's Alexander Gray Associates, featuring sculptures and woven assemblages. Recognised as a pioneer of conceptual art and experimental practices in the United Arab Emirates over the past four decades, Sharif has transgressed traditional frameworks for art making by extending his practice to performance, installation, drawing, painting, and assemblage that integrates ordinary objects as the primary medium. The tapestry-like works in this exhibition are conceptually linked by their relationship with the human body and social structures.
RAMIN HAERIZADEH, ROKNI HAERIZADEH, HESAM RAHMANIANHer Majesty? March 15, 2016
Published by Edition Patrick Frey
Ramin Haerizadeh, Rokni Haerizadeh and Hesam Rahmanian's Her Majesty? is a limited edition facsimile where the trio have completely overhauled the XL coffee table publication, which was published by Taschen Verlag in 2012 about the life of Queen Elizabeth II. Her Majesty? is now available at the gallery and each book comes with a unique, handmade cover of only 600 copies.
For more information and to order a copy online, please click here.
MOHAMMED KAZEMMy Neighbours March 14, 2016
Main Entrance, Alserkal Avenue, Dubai, UAE
Until 6 July
As part of Alserkal Avenue's Programming for Art Week 2016, Mohammed Kazem presents a site-specific installation My Neighbours, which consists of images from his 2006 photograph series of the same name. These photographs were taken over the course of several days looking outside from the artist's window in Al Quoz. A clothesline hangs at the bottom of each image, his neighbour's clothes hung out to dry, changing with every passing day. The only constant among the photos is a wide expanse of clear blue sky. In a city like Dubai, with very little public spaces, the sky holds out the promise of a shared space, a common that encompasses us all.
Hassan Sharif: Objects and FilesMathaf: Arab Museum of Modern Art, Doha, Qatar Curated by Laura Barlow March 10, 2016
Until 4 September
Hassan Sharif's solo exhibition at Mathaf: Arab Museum of Modern Art includes a selection of works from the museum's collection such as object installations and artist archives made between 1981 and 1987. During these years, Sharif established new, self-imposed system of repetition, duration, and chance in the execution of his work. These methodologies have driven a practice spanning 40 years that mischievously confront our material and immaterial complicity with production of art and culture, as well as commodoties and industry. The exhibition shows key works through which Sharif asserts the role of art and the artist in writing new visual languages to disseminate critical debates on the political, economic and cultural layers of the society.
BITA FAYYAZICeramix March 9, 2016
La Maison Rouge, Paris, France
Until 12 June
Bita Fayyazi participates in Ceramix at La Maison Rouge with her iconic ceramic Cockroaches installation, which was first exhibited at the 6th Biennial of Contemporary Ceramic Art in Tehran in 1998. With over 250 pieces from international museums and private collections, this exhibition presents works by 20th and 21st century artists such as Matisse, Rodin, Picasso, Thomas Schütte and Ai Weiwei, among others.
Ramin HaerizadehMemory and Continuity February 24, 2016
Pera Museum, Istanbul, Turkey
Until 1 May
Ramin Haerizadeh participates in Memory and Continuity, which features works from the Huma Kabakci Collection that Nahit Kabakci began to put together in the 1980s. The collection is considered one of the most important examples of the few consciously created and well-sustained collections in Turkey. Preserved and upheld by two generations, the collection's affiliated and divergent points are brought to the fore in this exhibition.
Zoulikha BouabdellahCross-Border: Video works by contemporary artists from the Southern Mediterranean February 21, 2016
Pātaka Art + Museum, Porirura, New Zealand
Until 15 May
We are pleased to announce Zoulikha Bouabdellah's participation in Cross-Border: Video works by contemporary artists from the Southern Mediterranean, which coincides with Wellington's International Arts Festival and features video works from the ZKM's 2013 exhibition Cross-Border by artists such as Amal Kenawy, Rana ElNemr, Reem Ghazzi, Susan Hefuna, Emily Jacir and Katia Kameli.
Mohammed Kazem and Hassan Sharif1980-Today: Exhibition in the United Arab Emirates February 13, 2016
The Flying Saucer, Sharjah Art Foundation, Sharjah UAE
Curated by Hoor Al Qasimi
Until 14 May
As presented at the National Pavilion of the UAE in the 56th edition of the Venice Biennale, 1980-Today: Exhibitions in the United Arab Emirates is now on view in Sharjah and looks at the history of exhibition making in the United Arab Emirates over the last 40 years. The emergence of art practices in the UAE is presented here through a selection of over 100 works by 15 Emirati artists.
The exhibition is built upon extensive research involving archives of newspaper articles, artists' writings, and catalogues, as well as interviews with artists and cultural practitioners. Reflecting personal and geopolitical trajectories, the research focused on the underexposed historical record and evolving practices of some of the UAE's most important modernist and contemporary artists.
Hassan SharifLooking at the World Around You. Contemporary Works from Qatar Museums February 9, 2016
Fundación Banco Santander, Madrid, Spain
Curated by Abdellah Karroum and Fatma Mostafawi
Until 19 June
Hassan Sharif participates in Looking at the World Around You. Contemporary Works from Qatar Museums, which is held in collaboration with Madrid's Fundación Banco Santander.
The exhibition includes works that traverse nearly two centuries of artistic production across three continents. Conceiving of art as a way of looking at the world around you, of proposing a multitude of interpretations and ideas for changing perceptions, the exhibition is itself an invitation to look again and see anew; an invitation, in other words, to rethink the alignment of histories and how to make sense of the world today.
RAMIN HAERIZADEH, ROKNI HAERIZADEH, HESAM RAHMANIANFlow Series February 8, 2016
Auditori Fundació Antoni Tàpies
Aragó 255, 08007, Barcelona, Spain
8 February at 7.30 pm
We are pleased to announce Ramin & Rokni Haerizadeh and Hesam Rahmanian's participation in Flow Series #2, where they will be in conversation with Rosa Lleo, founder of The Green Parrot.
Flow Series a programme promoted by the Fundació Han Nefkens and the Fundació Antoni Tàpies with the aim of bringing together members of the art world from different continents and contexts. Encounters focussing on an artist and their ongoing work are the object of a conversation followed by a meal. An invitation to discuss the implications of a global dimension in the work of contemporary artists while sampling the edible creations of local artists.
ZOULIKHA BOUABDELLAHLucy's Iris. Contemporary African Women Artists January 30, 2016
Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Castilla y León, León, Spain
Until 12 June
Zoulikha Bouabdellah participates in Lucy's Iris. Contemporary African Women Artists, a group exhibition featuring installation, photography, video, painting, drawing and sculpture by 20 artists, each of whom addresses issues of gender, identity, ethnic groups, body, borders, territory and environment, history, memory, politics, tradition and present, feminism, colonial and postcolonial issues, migration and displacement, among others.
Hassan Sharif and Mohammed KazemDo It [In Arabic] January 23, 2016
Sharjah Art Foundation, Sharjah, UAE
Curated by Hoor Al Qasimi and Hans Ulrich Obrist
Until 23 March
We are pleased to announce Mohammed Kazem and Hassan Sharif's participation in Do It [In Arabic], in which more than 60 participating artists will create written instructions that will allow anyone to make a new work of art. The exhibition is a new iteration of Hans Ulrich Obrist's project, which began in Paris in 1993 as a conversation between Obrist, photographer Christian Boltanski and artist Bertrand Lavier.
Hassan Sharif and Mohammed KazemIn Search of Lost Time January 21, 2016
Brunei Gallery, London, UK
Curated by Amal Khalaf, Abdel Al Kadiri and Abdulnasser Gharem
Until 19 March
We are pleased to announce Mohammed Kazem and Hassan Sharif's participation in In Search of Lost Time. The exhibition, commissioned by The British Council in association with Brunei Gallery, presents works that explore the complex relationship between image, speed and time in the Gulf. In doing so, the exhibition aims to provoke a discussion about the role of art and culture in the region through the works of Rajaa Khalid, Jafar Islah, Sami Mohammed, Ahmed Mater, Abdallah Al Saadi, Ajlan Gharem, Camille Zakharia, Kazem, Sharif, Sophia Al Maria, Monira Al Qadiri, Lantian Xie, Mohammed Sharaf and Shaweesh.
RAMIN HAERIZADEH, ROKNI HAERIZADEH, HESAM RAHMANIANThe Birthday Party December 16, 2015
ICA | The Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston, USA
Organised by assistant curator Ruth Erickson with curatorial assistant Jeffrey De Blois
Until 27 March
The Birthday Party is the trio's first museum exhibition in the USA and borrows its title from a 1953 play by Nobel prize winning English writer Harold Pinter, a surreal comedy about a party organised as a ploy to get the character to sit down. The Haerizadeh brothers and Rahmanian began their version as a kind of a party-cum-performance in August at Gallery Isabelle van den Eynde. During the performance, they shuffled around the space in costumes made of long prayer robes that obscured their vision, spilling paint across a floor they constructed, while unwrapping presents and making accumulative sculptures out of their contents.
In the current installation at the ICA, they bring together some of the remnants from the performance - the painted floor, the sculptures, and the video documentation - with a number of new works and a selection of works by other artists such as Louise Bourgeois, Bahman Mohassess, Ree Morton and Hassan Sharif.
RAMIN HAERIZADEH, ROKNI HAERIZADEH, HESAM RAHMANIANThe 8th Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art November 21, 2015
Queensland Art Gallery of Modern Art, Brisbane, Australia
Until 10 April
All The Rivers Run Into The Sea. Over. / Copy. Yet, The Sea Is Not Full. Over. (2015) challenges the conventional modes of display and standards of value. Every inch of the room is covered, including walls and floors, with no concern for hierarchy and preciousness. Their medley of influences ranges from satirical folk theatre, illuminated manuscripts, miniature painting and Persian poetry, to Modernist art and Pop culture.
The trio discuss their collaborative practice in this youtube video: APT8 Artist Interview | Ramin and Rokni Haerizadeh and Hesam Rahmanian at QAGOMA.