JEDDAH, 24 December 2003 — Artists in Saudi Arabia have shown tremendous interest in all kinds of art, according to an Italian artist. Jeddah’s House of Artists (HOA) hosted Professor Dionisio Cimarelli’s visit to Jeddah over the weekend.
“Growing interest in art was evident from the workshops I conducted in Riyadh and Jeddah,” Professor Cimarelli told Arab News. He was invited to the Kingdom by King Saud University (KSU).
HOA organized activities for artists and art enthusiasts during Professor Cimarelli’s visit. These included an open forum and a collective exhibition at Jamjoom Center as well as a joint exhibition at the art gallery of Elysee Printemps Center (formerly Middle East Center) of the works of local artists Abdullah Idris and Sami Marzoogi.
Professor Cimarelli also toured the historical area of Jeddah’s old city.
An HOA official said Professor Cimarelli’s visit was a promising start to mutual cooperation between KSU and HOA. “This will certainly benefit the development of art in the Kingdom,” he said.
Professor Cimarelli, who anticipates holding exhibitions in Riyadh and Jeddah next year, said he had lost count of the number of sculptures he had produced over the years.
He holds several diplomas, including one in wood sculpture. He has studied at the National Sculpture Society in New York, the Academy of Fine Arts in St. Petersburg and worked as a sculptor and restorer of decorative sculptures. He taught at the Wimbledon School of Art in London and has held solo exhibitions in a number of European cities.