Marvel fires artist over hidden religious symbols in X-Men comics

Marvel has fired X-Men artist Ardian Syaf after he hid religious references in the latest issue of the comic book. (Photo courtesy: Marvel)
Updated 13 April 2017

Marvel fires artist over hidden religious symbols in X-Men comics

DUBAI: Marvel has fired X-Men artist Ardian Syaf after he hid Islamic references in the latest issue of the comic book.
The BBC reported Wednesday that the Indonesian artist’s contract had been “terminated immediately” due to religious symbolism hidden in issues two and three of “X-Men: Gold.”
Syaf was the lead artist and was fired because he referenced a verse of the Qur’an and the date of a protest against the Christian Governor of Jakarta, Basuki Tjahaja Purnama, who is currently running for re-election.
He also drew Jewish character Kitty Pryde in front of a jewelry store with only the first three letters of the word visible.
In a Facebook post, the BBC reported that Syaf claims he used Qur’anic references out of “love” for the religion and added that he said “my career is over now.”
“It’s the consequence what I did, and I take it,” he wrote.
“Please no more mockery, debate, no more hate.”
According to Marvel, issues 4-9 of X-Men: Gold will be drawn by substitute artists until a replacement is found.
“The mentioned artwork in X-Men Gold #1 was inserted without knowledge behind its reported meanings,” said Marvel in an earlier statement.
“These implied references do not reflect the views of the writer, editors or anyone else at Marvel and are in direct opposition of the inclusiveness of Marvel Comics and what the X-Men have stood for since their creation.
“This artwork will be removed from subsequent printings, digital versions, and trade paperbacks and disciplinary action is being taken.”


Emirati photographer finds that lockdowns have a silver lining

The photographer enjoys capturing industrial facilities and ghostly landscapes. (Tashkeel)
Updated 29 May 2020

Emirati photographer finds that lockdowns have a silver lining

DUBAI: The COVID-19 lockdowns may have cancelled festivals and closed down museums around the world, but some artists have continued to thrive.  

Emirati photographer Jalal Bin Thaneya told Arab News that in his field the pandemic has only slowed down artistic photography.

“Some documentary and news photographers are still able to work, especially those employed by organizations and governments fighting the virus,” Thaneya said. “Documenting and getting images of what is happening on the ground is extremely important.”

“Photography records moments,” the artist said. “In World War II, (the American photographer) Margaret Bourke-White was actively taking pictures and she has been a big influence on me.”

This, he believes, is an example of how photography and art have flourished during difficult times.

Despite the delays the lockdown has imposed on Thaneya’s projects, he says he now has got more time to work on his unpublished pictures. 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Rims 02, 120x160 cm, 2018 / #industry #beyondthefence

A post shared by Jalal Bin Thaneya (@binthaneya) on

“Priorities have shifted overnight. I have many images I made that I never showed which I’m currently compiling. The lockdown has given me time to organize myself and prepare for future projects,” he said. 

The self-taught artist, who enjoys capturing industrial facilities and ghostly landscapes, said: “What I do is very niche and not widely appreciated in the region.”

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Valves / #industry #industrial_landscapes

A post shared by Jalal Bin Thaneya (@binthaneya) on

He discovered his passion by “accident” in 2013. “I saw old architecture being demolished at the Jabal Ali port and it is from that point that I started taking pictures of abandoned spaces before focusing on industrial landscapes and artefacts from 2016 to date.”

Thaneya believes that many people look down on his job. “However, if I listened to what people said, I would’ve stopped many years ago,” he added. 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Raw material feeder and cement silos. // #Industry #Industrial_Dubai

A post shared by Jalal Bin Thaneya (@binthaneya) on

“You’ve got to follow your intuition and do things that give you purpose. Listening and following the crowd will only dilute your character and individual essence,” he advised other photographers who wish to pursue this career. 

“We cannot allow others to do the thinking for us, we need to be clear and focused on what we would like to achieve,” Thaneya said.