Spectrum Exhibition
Spectrum Exhibition: Cohort One
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Manarat Al Saadiyat is hosting Spectrum, an exhibition organised by Manarat Al Saadiyat’s Photography Studio. The show displays the outcome of the 1st cohort of the Spectrum Photography Residency. On view are the artworks of the seven residents which present a full range of ideas, subjects, and techniques spanning a spectrum of human experiences. The exhibition will end on 4 September 2023.

Curated by Walter Willems (an artist, curator, and mentor in the Spectrum Residency Programme), Spectrum celebrates diversity and inclusivity and shows that there is no only right approach to photography that fits everyone. Through their lenses, the art practitioners taking part in the programme have explored issues related to identity, cultural heritage, spirituality, representation, and marginalised communities.

About the participants

Adele Bea Cipste (b.1998) is a visual artist based in the Emirates whose art practice involves photography and drawing. In 2022, she received a BA degree in Art Practice and Film Practice from NYU Abu Dhabi. The artist is interested in the emotional impact of spaces and reflects on experiences and locations that catch her eye with their architecture. Her artworks explore intersections between the natural and the constructed and also reflect on how spaces act as agents of memory.

Adele Bea Cipste, Saadiyat 1-8, 2023. One of the eight digital prints on Hahnemühle Photo Rag®. Bright White 310gsm paper. 30 x 20 cm. each.

Almaha Jaralla (b. 1996, Abu Dhabi, UAE) is an Emirati artist creating personal portraits of living environments. Her photographs and paintings are dedicated to the modern history of Abu Dhabi; she particularly focuses on architectural changes. Getting inspiration from her documentary photography and archives, she examines sociocultural dynamics and ancestral histories and delves into such themes as identity, societal norms, and the role of women in Emirati society.

Almaha Jaralla, I/1, 2020. Acrylic on canvas. 150 x 47 cm.

Lateefa Almazrouei (b. 1997) is an Emirati artist who works in photography, film, and interactive installation. Modifying mundane objects and tools digitally or physically, she produces artworks leading to thought-provoking interpretations of everyday life. Recently, she has started to delve into a more personal perspective. Almazrouei is inspired by moments of stillness that feel ordinary and transforms them into something special.

Mahra Almehairi, a Dubai-based photographer, strives to preserve the Arab world’s essence in her pictures. Drawn to cultural documentation, she focuses on capturing the people she meets and the region’s various cultures. In her work, Almheiri explores the interconnectedness of culture and landscape and portrays the dynamic relationship between people and their surroundings.

One of Mahra Almehairi’s photographs.

Ruqaya Al Hashmi is an interdisciplinary artist. Her artistic practice encompasses painting, drawing, photography, printmaking, ceramics, sculpture, and installation. She is influenced by different spiritual teachings and uses repetitive and rhythmic patterns in her work. This way, she creates a meditative atmosphere and invites one to contemplate the enigmas of life. Al Hashmi believes in gaining self-awareness and understanding by delving into these mysteries.

Vedika Kushalappa is a multidisciplinary artist. Employing photography, drawing, and digital painting, she explores how symbology, nature, and the concept of home are connected. The artist’s inspiration sources are nature’s beauty and wisdom. With her art pieces serving as windows into the unseen, Kushalappa invites her audience to contemplate the spiritual connections within the world of nature.

Waleed Almadani is a filmmaker and documentary director whose visual language incorporates black-and-white film photography. He has obtained a joint Master’s degree from DocNomads and is currently collaborating with Music and Sound Cultures at NYUAD. Almadani has worked as a production and post-production instructor in a number of academic programs such as, for instance, Image Nation Abu Dhabi Arab Film Studio. In his work, he examines the impact of spaces that we are unnoticeably influenced by and aims to express the unspoken emotions spaces evoke within us.

To learn more about the Spectrum exhibition, please visit its official web page.

You might also be interested in visiting The Storyteller at Leila Heller Gallery.

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