Whitechapel Gallery

Barjeel Art Foundation Collection

15 Dec 2015 - 17 Apr 2016

Kamal Boullata
La Ana Illa Ana (There Is No ‘I’ But ‘I’), 1983, Silkscreen, 60 x 40 cm, Image Courtesy of Meem Gallery, Barjeel Art Foundation, Sharjah
Imperfect Chronology: Debating Modernism II
15 December 2015 - 17 April 2016

Modern art from the Arab world – a region that encompasses North Africa, the Eastern Mediterranean and the Gulf – can range from pure abstraction to radical figuration. The Arab artists in this display are as diverse as the countries they hail from but came of age in the dawn of a post-colonial era. As they sought to express a cultural identity that could bridge ancient traditions and modernity, they were also experiencing periods of conflict and rapid social change.

In this second of four exhibitions drawn from the Barjeel Art Foundation, one of the most significant collections of 20th century Arab art in the world, the paintings and works on paper show how social change impacts on art. Artists in this display, such as Huguette Caland (Beirut), Marwan (Damascus) and Kamal Boullata (Jerusalem) reveal a modernity shaped as much by local cultural traditions as by ideas of global modernism.

The exhibition also features other modern masters from Algeria, Egypt, Iraq, Kuwait, Morocco, Palestine, Sudan, Syria and the UAE including Shafic Abboud, Dia Azzawi, Tayseer Barakat, Farid Belkahia, Ibrahim El Salahi, Jafar Islah, Abdelkader Guermaz, Miloud Labeid, Suleiman Mansour, Fateh Moudarres, Hamed Nada, Abdul Qader Al Rais, Walid Shami and Hassan Sharif.

Tags: Huguette Caland, Marwan, Hassan Sharif