An array of Qatar Museums (QM) initiatives continue to provide Doha-based artists an opportunity to nurture their talents, and help make the country’s art scene more vibrant, according to Fire Station exhibitions co-ordinator Amal Zeyad Ali.
She told Gulf Times
that there are many QM open calls such as the Jedariart initiative where artists can apply and take part to grow and develop themselves.
QM, Ali pointed out, also believes “in the fact that if you give an opportunity to an artist they will cherish it and they will grow out of that.”
Abdulaziz Yousef Ahmed's Woman Side Profile in Abaya at Al Tarfa Al Khor Interchange.
A public art programme by QM, Jedariart gathers artists to create murals and street art, adding vibrancy and meaning to the walls across Doha. It forms part of QM’s aim of supporting local artists and promoting public art.
“I think the impact of it (Jedariart) is when you go abroad, oftentimes you see art everywhere whether it's graffiti or commissioned and I think to have it commissioned makes it local, very site specific.
“It also brought in a lot of people (who) might not want to come to museums but they will see it in the roads like for example you go to Doha Festival City and as you're leaving you see Michael Perone’s mural, and maybe you're not very keen about art but you start being like ‘oh who's that where did that come from’ and you want to learn more,” said Ali, who is also the curator of ‘Abstraction: Subverting Reality’ exhibition and organiser of the ‘Abeer Al-Tamimi: Beyond the Rules’ exhibition at the Fire Station.
Mural by Michael Perrone (assisted by Salma Awad, Teslim Sanni, Amna Al Muftah, Maha Nasr, Alice Aslem, Parthivan K) titled 'Home and Away' at Doha Festival City Interchange.
Besides Jedariart, she added that other programmes such as the Fire Station’s Paris and New York international residency also provided artists the needed exposure abroad to enhance their skills and broaden their horizon and perspective.
About challenges, Ali noted that the Covid-19 pandemic motivated people to look inwards and find their own identity as an artist.
“I think the more and more that we see art and people practicing art, the more people will look inwards, the more you will look at a painting (and) be like ‘oh that's that artist’ and you'll see their personal take on it, and they will have a personal identity.
“I think that will really shape Qatar not only as an international player in the art scene, not only an importer of art, but also an exporter of art and they've already started to do that but they will continue to do so,” added Ali.