HIGHLIGHTS from “Inhabited Deserts” in Dubai

“Chara Sands” by John R. Pepper. (Supplied)
Updated 18 December 2018

HIGHLIGHTS from “Inhabited Deserts” in Dubai

DUBAI: John R. Pepper’s ‘Inhabited Deserts,’ is showcasing at The Empty Quarter in Dubai until January 27.

“Chara Sands”
In his artist’s statement for this exhibition, the Italian photographer explains that merely capturing the beauty of the desert was not enough. “My goal,” he writes, “has been to use the desert as a painter uses a virgin white canvas … I attempt to find the symbiosis between the landscape before me and the imagery buried within me.”

Here, Pepper captures an anthropomorphic figure in the stones of the South Sinai in Egypt. “Suddenly the rocks, these non-living elements, were transformed into the opposite: living, expressive, vibrant figures,” he writes. Pepper’s photographs are taken using a “small Leica, 35mm lens and Ilford film.”

“Dasht –e Lut”
Many of Pepper’s desert landscapes are so seemingly empty that they approach the abstract. But in his essay on the exhibition, Kirill Petrin writes: “Who said that deserts are uninhabited? Pepper’s work populates them with our thoughts, our dreams. It’s up to you, these photos seem to say. It’s entirely up to you to take the voyage out, and linger, and decide.”


Emirati comedy 'Rashid & Rajab’ strikes a deal at Cannes

Updated 19 May 2019

Emirati comedy 'Rashid & Rajab’ strikes a deal at Cannes

  • The film will be released during Eid Al-Fitr in the GCC
  • Mohammed Saeed also directed the animated series Freej

DUBAI: Image Nation Abu Dhabi’s upcoming film “Rashid & Rajab” has been acquired by international sales agent AGC International at the Cannes Film Festival, it was announced on Sunday.

The Emirati comedy will now become available worldwide, following the release of the film across the GCC over the Eid Al-Fitr break.

Shot on location in Dubai, it is Emirati director Mohammed Saeed’s first live-action feature film after his success with the now iconic animated series, Freej.

The comedy follows wealthy Emirati executive Rashid (Marwan Abdullah Saleh) and carefree Egyptian fast-food deliveryman Rajab (Shadi Alfons), who switch bodies after a freak accident on their way to work. As they desperately look for a way to revert to their former selves, the unlikely pair gain a different perspective into each other’s lives.