Saudi artists display their works in unique Islamic art expo

Saudi artist Ola Hejazi displays her painting of a girl making Dua’a (supplication) to Allah.
Updated 13 June 2017

Saudi artists display their works in unique Islamic art expo

JEDDAH: The works of artists from across the Kingdom are on display at the Nesma Art Gallery in an Islamic art exhibition in Jeddah. The exhibition is meant to reflect the cultural diversity and true soul of Islam.
Inspired by the spirit of the holy month of Ramadan, the paintings depict Islamic community life, culture and heritage. Many of the works contain Islamic calligraphy and offer a message of peace.
The exhibition will remain open for visitors throughout Ramadan.
Saleh bin Ali Al-Turki, chairman of Nesma Holding Co., said he believes it is a real achievement to feature myriad types of Islamic artwork by Arab and Saudi artists under one roof.
The works on display reflect the depth of the human soul and the link between Allah and the Holy Qur’an. Many of the paintings are clearly focused on the cultural traditions and civilization of Saudi Arabia and Islam, to emphasize how the country and its people have developed within the bounds of religion.
Mohammed Al-Ablan, an artist whose works have been exhibited around the world, said the exhibition has brought together artists from different schools of arts and their participation confirms that each artist has his own view.
Ola Hejazi, who is among the participating artists, told Arab News that most of the paintings depict the Holy Qur’an and mosques, and each artist has done this through their own distinct perspective.
“My painting shows my vision; Islam is not only about mosques, but also in making Dua’a (supplication) to Allah. So the girl in my painting is making Dua’a, which represents a simple and regular Muslim who can be anyone,” she said.

She explained that her painting also presented people who isolate themselves from the crowd and spend time in repentance, Dua’a is the most powerful way to connect to the Almighty.
She said some of the artists chose to write verses of the Quran but for her, presenting Dua’a is a spiritual feeling.
“It’s a secret only Allah knows, for he is aware of what’s inside our hearts,” she added.

Riyadh Season Boulevard zone opens with spectacular parade

Updated 56 min 3 sec ago

Riyadh Season Boulevard zone opens with spectacular parade

  • The Riyadh parade is thought to be the biggest parade in Kingdom to date

RIYADH: More than 1,500 performers and 25 floats took part in a parade and carnival on Thursday night that officially launched Riyadh Season’s Boulevard zone. The crowds that gathered for the fun-packed event were also treated to motorcycle displays, fireworks and other surprises.

The Boulevard lit up at 9 p.m. for the start of the 90-minute event, which featured some of the international artists who will perform as part of Riyadh Season. Afterwards, the zone’s food and drink outlets, outdoor cinema and fountain shows officially opened.

The audience watched the parade, performances and displays from specially constructed stands. Food trucks offered a selection of tasty snacks, and organizers also provided prayer rooms, toilets, first-aid stations and other facilities.


GEA president Turki Al-Sheikh gave an opening speech: “Our dearest people, in the beginning of this season, we welcome you and our guests in Riyadh.

“I want to share a story with you all; once upon a time, I was from a middle-class family. My mother and father would gather both their salaries to have us travel to see the world, and then we would stay in Riyadh for a year. These were our capabilities (at the time) and there was nothing to do in Riyadh. Who would've thought that we’d see all of this in Riyadh, and in our beloved country?

“This wouldn't have been possible without -of course Allah first- a person who has the qualities and vision of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.”

He tweeted: “Riyadh traffic police estimated we have exceeded 600K which means ten times the capacity.”

In addition to the opening-night festivities, the Boulevard zone, which covers 400,000 square meters, will host a wide range of entertainment options and activities for all ages, including the outdoor cinema, restaurants, and sports, music and theatrical events. It has three main venues: The 22,000-seat Mohammed Abdu Theater, the 6,000-seat Abu Bakr Salem Theater, and the 2,000-seat Baker Al-Sheddi Theater.

The parade is just one of more than 100 events featuring local, regional and international performers taking place during the Riyadh Season festival, which continues until mid-December at 12 zones across the city: the Boulevard; the Front; Riyadh Car Show; Winter Wonderland; Riyadh Stadiums; the Diplomatic Quarter; Al-Muraba’a; Al-Malaz; Wadi Namar; Nabd Al-Riyadh; Riyadh Safari; and Riyadh Sahara. It has been organized with the support of Turki Al-Sheikh, chairman of the General Entertainment Authority and president of Riyadh Season.

The ambitious 2019 Saudi Seasons initiative, the first of its kind in the region, was launched in February and includes 11 local seasons covering most parts of the Kingdom. Designed to promote the fledgling Saudi entertainment sector and boost tourism, it is attracting some of the biggest names in world entertainment.

The Riyadh parade is thought to be the biggest parade in Kingdom to date. It follows a folklore parade at the Mawtni (My Nation) cultural event in Yanbu to mark Saudi National Day this year, and a parade during the Jeddah Season festivities in the city’s Obhur district.

The parade had a special surprise; the appearance of DJ Carnage who took to the stage dressed in complete Saudi attire and performed his successful electronic show.

The musician also took to Twitter to celebrate the night and how he had had a hand in “making history,” tweeting: “A huge thank you to @Turki_alalshikh  ..... what you did for your country last night... was so special... thank you for having me... we made history.”