Sharjah Islamic Arts Festival returns for its 22nd edition

“Bloom,” by Li Hongbo. Supplied
Short Url
Updated 28 December 2019

Sharjah Islamic Arts Festival returns for its 22nd edition

  • The 22nd edition of the Sharjah Islamic Arts Festival is currently underway in the emirate
  • The festival features a mishmash of artworks that celebrate the splendor of Islamic art by 108 artists

DUBAI: The 22nd edition of the Sharjah Islamic Arts Festival, which kicked off this month, is currently underway throughout the emirate, with thought-provoking exhibitions presented in three different locations: The Sharjah Art Museum, Al-Majaz Waterfront and Maraya Art Center. 

Bringing together exhibitions, installations, talks and workshops scattered across the emirate, the event, which runs until Jan. 21, 2020, is not one to miss.

The month-long art festival is organized under the theme of “Prospect,” and features a mishmash of artworks that celebrate the splendor of Islamic art by 108 artists from 31 different countries.

Among the artists showcasing their works is Egyptian sculptor Ahmed Karaly, who is known for his architectural installations. He is presenting his work “The Spirit of The City” at the contemporary art space, the Maraya Art Center. For the installation, the artist used eight layers of chiffon in his reinterpretation of Islamic architecture.

The Egyptian sculptor’s work is presented alongside Chinese artist Li Hongbo’s paper sculptures that are inspired by the patterns prevalent in traditional Islamic art.

Other highlights include Emirati artist Moza Matter, who is showcasing work centered around the act of making du’aa — an Islamic supplication. The work portrays people raising their hands in du’aa during their Hajj pilgrimage.

Meanwhile, Syrian-American artist and architect Mohamad Hafez reconstructed the ancient city of Damascus’s streetscapes, replete with intricately carved wooden doors, clotheslines hanging from balconies and satellite dishes via a hyper-realistic diorama.

Another standout art piece on display is an immersive installation entitled “Infinitum.” The piece of work was designed by Italian architect and designer Antonio Pio Saracino, who drew inspiration from the distinctive arches of the region, which are a fixture in Islamic architecture.  

Australian artist James Tapscott and Shozy, a Russian 3D artist, are also participating in the 22nd edition of the fair.

Established in 1998, the annual Sharjah Islamic Arts Festival aims to spotlight the different styles of Islamic art through various mediums.


George and Amal Clooney to donate $100,000 to Lebanese charities

Updated 07 August 2020

George and Amal Clooney to donate $100,000 to Lebanese charities

DUBAI: American actor George Clooney and his wife, Lebanese-British human rights lawyer Amal Clooney, are donating $100,000 to Lebanese charities helping those left homeless by the deadly explosion in Beirut.

The blast, which broke though the capital city on Aug. 4, has killed at least 137 people and injured thousands.

According to Variety, the couple said: “We’re both deeply concerned for the people of Beirut and the devastation they’ve faced in the last few days.”

“Three charitable organizations we’ve found are providing essential relief on the ground: the Lebanese Red Cross, Impact Lebanon, and Baytna Baytak. We will be donating to these three $100,000 and hope that others will help in any way they can,” they added.

Other celebrities such as Kylie Jenner, DJ Khaled, and singer Dua Lipa, have been taking to social media to show their support for victims, and online influencers around the world have been urging their followers to make donations toward rescue and recovery work.