Doha-based Mexican artist and photographer Juan Miguel Ramirez aka ‘Icaro’ has framed a stunning depiction of the deep-rooted links between Arabic and Mexican cultures with his paintings showcased at the Melody of Arts exhibition, Katara Art Centre.
“Mexico and Qatar have a lot of similarities, they are very close and this exhibition allows me to express the way I see the history of the country (Qatar),” he told Gulf Times yesterday at the show, which was attended by Mexican ambassador to Qatar Graciela Gomez Garcia.
The artist noted that he uses watermelon in a number of his works as a symbol to express his perception about a certain subject – Qatar’s history and heritage reflected in museums, buildings and architecture in particular.
“I see watermelons as boats, as movements, and it is also very similar to humans – a major part of the body is made of water as we know,” said Icaro, who arrive in Qatar 14 years ago.
He is a member of the International Artists of Doha and founder member of Latin American Artists in Qatar (2017).One of the pieces at the exhibition, portrays the early life of Qataris who were professional fishermen and pearl divers while another piece is the artist’s representation of the Al Zubarah town.
About Katara – the Cultural Village and the Melody of Arts gallery, the artist said the place is a way of “expressing the old Doha”- its architecture and lighting, the sizes of the buildings, which highlight the country’s rich heritage.
“I am very proud and honoured to be here at Katara.
I know Katara very well because my first solo exhibition was held here six years ago.
This is one of the most-friendly places to exhibit art, a good platform for artists to showcase their works,” Icaro stressed.
“They combine very contemporary art and also some kind of furniture, and how they deal with the local style not only from Qatar but from the region as well,” he added.
The Mexican ambassador lauded the exhibition and the artist saying that Icaro is one of their prominent ambassadors of Mexican culture in Doha.
“It is always a great pleasure to be part of some exhibition by a Mexican artist in Qatar.
Icaro is one of our best ambassadors of Mexican culture here, and I see in this wonderful exhibition a combination of elements, the evocation of what the Arabic and the Mexican culture have in common,” Garcia said.
“One of the things I admired the most about his vision is that you will always find elements very Qatari, like these silhouettes, he favours a lot these images of people, but at the same time you will always have his emblematic watermelon and the other representation of himself, the Mexican part,” the envoy noted.
“What we have here is contemporary art and it is all about innovation, mixing techniques, creating reality out of materials that are not there, and presenting to our imagination wonderful elements,” Garcia said.“I like his technique, I own a couple of his pieces, and I love that, the fact that he is innovative, he uses a mixture of different elements, and again, this is the best opportunity to have a contemporary Mexican artist here in Doha, presenting this fusion with his art.”