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“Traicing Bounderies”: Bashar Alhroub’s Exhibition

“Traicing Bounderies” is the current exhibition of the Palestinian artist Bashar Alhroub. Born in Jerusalem in 1978 and grew up in Hebron, the artist currently living and working in Ramallah. The exhibition is going on now in Zawyeh Gallery in the Warehouse 27 in Alserkal Avenue in Dubai. The last day of the show will be 5 January 2023.

Alhroub works with a variety of media including photography, video installation, sculpture and paintings. This exhibition is a combination of installation, sculpture, drawing and silkscreen printing. At the centre of the space in Zawyeh Gallery there is a four-meter-tall installation representing a façade resembling the Dome of the Rock holy compound. For Alhroub this is one of the symbols of the city of Jerusalem. He plays with that symbol emphasising the holiness of the city from one side and showing it as a place with a highly commercialised market from another side. The coloured ceramic sculptures of the dome represent mass production. He tries to show the fine line between spirituality and commercial clutter and invites the visitors to think about it.

Bashar Alhroub, Dome of the Rock, 2022. Ceramic sculptures, 9 4/5 × 9 4/5 × 11 4/5 in | 25 × 25 × 30 cm

“Jerusalem as a city has a lot of layers, whether historical, religious or mythological…Everyone tries to create a new history around it, and with this show I did it too, according to the relationship I have built with the city over time. I materialised it through objects from reality, as well as from what I imagine when I walk around the city. Ultimately, it’s inner Jerusalem I’m talking about,” Alhroub explained in an interview to MEMO website.

Bashar Alhroub’s art is deeply influenced by the socio-political sentiments that assert his identity. His desire is to belong to a social and cultural community, to be rooted in a particular place. He constantly longs for a feeling of attachment.

Bashar Alhroub, Sacred Domes #2, 2022. Ink & gold leaf on paper, 21 3/10 × 26 in | 54 × 66 cm

He feels that there is a kind of stereotypical image of Jerusalem. “The Orientalist image is still so strong. So I tried to play with the concept of the city of Jerusalem, thinking of it as a playground. I was like a kid playing in his room.” Alhroub feels entitled to do so, as Jerusalem is the city where he was born. “This place means a lot to me personally, more than politically and religiously. I just have a deep love for the city.”

This show was also a part of Alserkal Art Week. You can find more info about the exhibition on its official web page or on the gallery’s website.

You might also be interested in visiting the Films exhibition of Ismail Bahri.

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