Misk Art Institute announces new exhibition on theme of identity

Titled Here, Now, it will bring together works of Saudi and international artists in a show from October to January

Misk Art Institute announced its new exhibition, which will coincide with Misk Art Week from December 1 to 5. Titled Here, Now, the show is curated by British critic and writer Sacha Craddock, alongside assistant curators Alia Ahmad Al Saud and Nora Algosaibi, and tackles the theme of identity.

The exhibition brings international artists into conversation with Saudi talent working in a variety of media including paintings, textiles, sculptures, immersive installations and digital works, under the theme of identity and the notions of the self in relation to location and society.

Participating artists include Ayman Yossri Daydban (Saudi Arabia/Palestine); Filwa Nazer (Saudi Arabia); Manal AlDowayan (Saudi Arabia); Piyarat Piyapongwiwat (Thailand); Salah Elmur (Sudan); Sami Ali AlHossein (Saudi Arabia); Sheila Hicks (US); Vasudevan Akkitham (India); Young In Hong (South Korea) and Yousef Jaha (Saudi Arabia).

“We are delighted to see Sacha Craddock, together with the Institute’s curators Alia Ahmad Al Saud and Nora Algosaibi, respond to and map out the universality of identity. Convening artists from more than five countries in dialogue with Saudi voices, the exhibition echoes our year-long work and programming, which is to provide a laboratory for creativity and discovery and invite the public into the creative process,” said Reem Al Sultan, chief executive of Misk Art Institute.

Among the works is a large-scale piece by AlDowayan titled I Am Here, which allows visitors to participate in the work. Using paint and stencils, they are invited to affirm their presence at the show by recreating the artwork’s title on a gallery wall. AlDowayan’s works explores the relation between seemingly opposite notions, such as the traditional and contemporary or local community and the globalised world.

Saudi-Palestinian artist Daydban’s Tree House deconstructs archetypal narratives related to cultural heritage and identity, while American contemporary artist Hicks presents a large-scale woven installation originally conceived in Riyadh’s King Saud University, where Hicks set up an art programme in the 1980s. Lying on the ground and looking up at the tree became the basis of her piece Palm.

“I hope that the exceptionally fluid and open process that brought Here, Now together is mirrored by the experience of the audience. Layers of curatorial knowledge and familiarity, on my part, have merged with totally new influences, innovations and traditions to produce a sense of perpetual discovery for all,” said Craddock.

Here, Now will run from October 3 to January 15, 2022 at Prince Faisal bin Fahd Arts Hall in Riyadh and online on Misk Art Institute’s website

Updated: September 3rd 2021, 1:08 PM