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A painting by Leila Nseir

Exhibition at Sharjah Art Museum goes digital

SHARJAH, May 17, 2020

A virtual tour of ‘A Century in Flux – Chapter II’ exhibition has been launched by Barjeel Art Foundation (BAF) in collaboration with Sharjah Museums Authority (SMA). 
 
To mark the occasion of the International Museums Day, which falls on May 18, and as part of the long-standing partnership between the two entities, BAF is displaying over 100 artworks at Sharjah Art Museum.
 
The online exhibition, which can be accessed through https://bit.ly/2YVSAEd, showcases as many as 126 pieces of art that demonstrate a broad range of styles, techniques, and thematic directions that have marked art practices in Arab countries between the 1880s and 1980s.
 
The show invites visitors to not only enjoy the new works on display but to also reflect on the selection strategy, pose critical questions, and think about the broader issues of inclusivity.
 
The second iteration of the exhibition aims to address notions of institutional representation and, in particular, to confront the question of gender inequality in the art world. 
 
Through a gender balanced display, the show aims to serve as a catalyst for conversations and debate on reasons behind the underrepresentation of particular individuals and groups in the museum context and most importantly how we can affect change.
 
“As we become more reliant on technology to help facilitate how people experience art during the current situation. This virtual exhibition will initiate much needed debates beyond the limits of place and time on topics such as that of gender representation in museums that are pertinent and must continue to be emphasised in the curatorial discourse,” said Manal Ataya, Director General of SMA. 
 
Works of prolific artists from the Arab World, including Jewad Selim, Shakir Hassan Al Said, Abdul Qader Al Rais, Etel Adnan, Mona Hatoum, Gazbia Sirry, and other lesser known artists are featured in the second chapter of the exhibition that was first launched last November. 
 
While many of the featured artists in the show are members of pioneering art movements and collectives, others are lesser known practitioners. In the words of Art Collector and Founder of BAF, Sultan Sooud Al Qassemi, these artists may not have significantly “influenced art history in the 1950s and 1960s—a lot of them were unknown—but to say that they never did work is also unfair.”
 
"We invite our audiences in the UAE and around the world to take a virtual walkthrough of our current exhibition at the Sharjah Art Museum, A Century in Flux: Chapter II,” said Al Qassemi. 
 
He noted that the show, which draws together artists from across the Arab World, is a treasury of histories, layered political accounts, and moving reflections on the human condition. 
 
“I am very pleased that it can now be experienced online by the wider public across the globe,” added the Art Collector and Founder of BAF.
 
Ways in which the region’s artists have responded to political events and the human condition over the course of a tumultuous twentieth century were focused on in the exhibition’s first chapter.
 
“We are delighted to offer access locally and globally to everyone generally interested or studying art related topics. The Sharjah Art Museum has always been a museum free and open to all, continuing to bring to its audiences world class exhibitions and an extensive calendar of educational programming. This new iteration of A Century in Flux, will allow our audiences to appreciate and understand the impact of artists and their important role in the development of societies notion of their identity and collective history,” Ataya added. 
 
This initiative is part of SMA's continuous efforts to reach out and engage members of the public during the Coronavirus lockdown. -- Tradearabia News Service
 
 



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