Moving Art at XVA Gallery
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On 7 September 2023, XVA Gallery launched Moving Art, a group show presenting eight prominent artists from different countries: Richard Ketley, Halim Al Karim, Yoshihiko Tsutsumi, Mahmoud Hamadani, Barbara Wildenboer, Imran Channa, Oussama Garti, and Jacob Roepke. The exhibition’s key theme is line, a constant element within art which dictates the depths and layers of a composition. The show explores what it means to create a dynamic artwork and capture a movement. It also investigates the relationship between the subject matter and the medium. One has the opportunity to attend Moving Art until 19 October 2023.

About the participants

Abstract artist Richard Ketley (b. 1964, Johannesburg, South Africa) lives and works between Johannesburg and Dubai. Although Ketley employs a full range of mediums to create his works, he predominantly works in charcoal, acrylic, and oil. A passionate traveller, the artist’s work is inspired by the world around him: by his experience of different places and cultures. According to his words, Ketley is interested in “finding meaning where others do not.”

Richard Ketley, Reds 26. Acrylic on drafting film. 89 x 185 x 0.25 cm.

Halim Al Karim (b. 1963, Iraq) is a photographer and artist living between Denver (Colorado, USA) and Dubai. He is well-known for his experimental photo works that he creates by minimally focusing enlarged negatives while taking a shot. The resulting out-of-focus pictures imply an uncertainty of context, time, and place. Impacted by his youth spent in politically unstable Iraq, the themes Al Karim investigates in his art are issues of power, violence, memory, detachment, and disengagement.

Artist and graphic designer Yoshihiko Tsutsumi (born in Kumamoto, Japan) has worked with many entertainment companies (discos, clubs, and live houses) in metropolitan areas like Roppongi, Shinjuku and Shibuya in Tokyo. Drawing with a white pencil over a black canvas or using a graphite pencil over a white surface, he produces 2D works reflecting an architectural process in which elements are plotted and then constructed.

Yoshihiko Tsutsumi, Fragment, 2015. Pencil on painted paper. 17 x 22 cm.

Artist Mahmoud Hamadani has received his BA in Mathematics from the State University of New York and a Master’s degree in Public Administration from the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. His art practice involves utilising ink on paper. With the help of various ink techniques, the artist creates minimalistic abstract artworks inspired by poetry, among other things.

Artist Barbara Wildenboer (b. 1973, Pretoria, South Africa) resides in Cape Town, South Africa. Her oeuvre mainly includes collages, digitally animated photo sculptures, and photo- and paper-constructions. Wildenboer’s intricately cut altered books, which often feature maps, atlases, and scientific subject matter, deserve special attention. Combining analogue and digital art mediums in her practice, the artist delves into such phenomena as temporality, fractal geometry, the connection between all living creatures, and our negligence concerning the natural world.

Barbara Wildenboer, Dark Paradise I, 2013. Framed Altered Book. 47 × 55.9 cm.

Artist Imran Channa (b. 1981, Pakistan) creates installations, drawings, paintings, and sculptures and also employs moving image as well as digital technologies in his practice. His work mainly focuses on historical documentation: he explores how it creates narratives, information, and misinformation. Channa usually draws a copy of a historic photo, partially erases it, and zooms into selected erased areas with a microscope. Thus, he shows us how the picture can survive repeated transformations and reincarnate into different times and locations with different purposes. The artist’s works spotlight psychic disturbance produced when history is remade and highlight how this process of erasure and fabrication is continuously influenced by power and ideology.

Oussama Garti (b. 1995, Rabat, Morocco), an architectural designer and artist based in London, UK, draws inspiration from numerous similarities between macro and micro elements which surround him. Involving extensive research, his work explores the idea of perception. While some of Garti’s abstract paintings are executed in deep colours, in his latest series of works titled Ripples, the canvases are entirely white. The artist started this series after small studies exploring the connection between emotions and hand gestures.

Oussama Garti, The Creation, 2021. Sculpted drapery. 50 x 90 cm each (Diptych).

Berlin-based German artist Jacob Roepke‘s practice engages painting and sculpting. In 1996, he began creating small paintings and has since produced more than 700 separate pieces. Each of these artworks depicts miniature characters who have to deal with the dangers and difficulties of daily life. Roepke’s concrete sculptures and silhouettes are abstract reliefs created “by using only a limited set of shapes, mainly triangles and squares”, but this way, the artist creates “a great variation of shapes and shades”.

To get more information about Moving Art, please visit the exhibition’s official web page.

You might also be interested in visiting The 6th Edition of Jameel Prize: Poetry to Politics.

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