Bridging cultures through the common language of art is the objective of the exhibition by Italian photographer Teresa Emanuele, hosted by the Italian Consulate General in Jeddah together with BMG Foundation.
The exhibition, entitled “QVOD VIDES, TOTVM” — Latin for “All that is seen” — was opened yesterday evening at the Italian Cultural Center premises in Jeddah and consists of 25 monochromatic images of natural landscapes printed on acrylic glass — of which two kinetic installations — in addition to one video work. The name of the exhibition is drawn from the Roman philosopher Seneca the Younger, who lived from 4 BC to 64 AD and whose discussions of nature fascinate Emanuele.
The emerging photographer said she felt blessed, as an artist, to be given the means of speaking in the language that allows different cultures to communicate.
She said that although she had not always derived her inspiration from the natural world, she now found herself “lost in contemplation of nature. Nature has become my muse.” During the opening ceremony, Saudi art specialist and curator of the exhibition Dalya Islam said: “Even though the images may at first glance appear to be simply pictures of the natural world, they are actually driven by a very beautiful philosophical thought that comes from the writings of the Roman philosopher Seneca.
He believed that the world around us is really that in which we can find contentment, and true peace and happiness,” as opposed to material possessions and power. Simone Petroni, Italian consul general, said he was “touched by her [Emanuele’s] sensitivity to grasp this harmony in nature that is in a way the mirror of the perfection of our Creator.”
Speaking about the technique used for QVOD VIDES, TOTVM, which gives the photographs a unique third dimension, Emanuele said it was actually an easy trick.
The images, printed on acrylic glass, are placed a few centimeters off the wall.
A spotlight is used to cast the shadows on the wall.
“I like to achieve an image that comes out the way I pictured it in my mind. For this exhibition, I had to picture 3D images with the shadows. I had to look for absolute white in the picture, because that is what allows transparency on the print. So, I looked for bright lights,” she explained. The word photography, she continued, comes from the Greek words “photos,” which means light, and “graphos,” or writing. In other words, “I am writing with light,” Emanuele said.
Apart from the exhibition, which will be open for the public daily from 5-10 p.m. until March 14 at the Italian Cultural Center, several photography workshops for children and adults will be organized.
The exhibition is held under BMG’s “Diplomacy of Art” initiative, which twice-yearly organizes exhibitions to highlight the similarities between cultures through art. The exhibition’s revenues will go to BMG’s Safe Driving campaign in Saudi Arabia.
Teresa Emanuele will have another exhibition in Riyadh in one month, after which she will have exhibitions in Paris and New York.

Selma Roth
Thu, 2013-03-07 02:27
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