Athier Mousawi and his Machine Hearts

This week, for our studio visit, we enter the wonderful world of Athier Mousawi. His studio is only temporary, set up in the Ayyam warehouses in Alserkal Avenue ahead of his forthcoming show Machine Hearts. We were lucky then, to catch the chance to visit. Athier’s paintings are visual journeys; your eye follows myriad paths of colour and form that warrant contemplation. The longer you look at one of his works, the more you discover.

His workspace is typically paint-splattered and a little chaotic but it is truly a pleasure to be invited in and to see his pieces in their final stages.

The concept behind his newest body of work is the consciousness behind war. What drives a man to kill another upon an order? What part of our minds and hearts have turned to machine when we press a button that causes mass destruction upon lives and to people we will never know? It is a fascinating question and one that is relevant to us all living in the 21st century, whether a direct victim of war or not.

Machine Hearts opens on March 14 at Ayyam Gallery, Alserkal Avenue. My full review will follow in The National's Arts & Life section

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