Established by The Abraaj Group, a leading private equity investor, to support contemporary artists of the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia, The Abraaj Group Art Prize invested in and has given resources to artists to develop their practice by realising a unique project. The prize reflects Abraaj’s own investment philosophy, which is to take viable businesses with great potential, and create regional and global champions.
Nat Muller, Curator
In A Glimpse of Clean History Shawky introduces his own transformation, albeit with a critical twist: a three-dimensional object in the form of a medieval marionette theatre with ceramic dolls. As an audience we are only privy to the scene for a short period of time. The grand velvet drapes open mechanically revealing the interior diorama of the marionette stage – for one minute – then close again.
Joana Hadjithomas and Khalil Joreige
Joana Hadjithomas and Khalil Joreige have articulated an imaginary embodiment of these spam and scam emails that clutter our inboxes on a daily basis. They have used the textual source material of selected spam and scam as visual narratives, image representations that become pieces of fiction by themselves, and beg the viewer’s suspension of disbelief.
In The Seven Seas Risham Syed connects the intricacies of contemporary geo-politics with the 19th and early 20th century cotton trade of the British Empire. With fabric sourced from travels to Turkey, Bangladesh, U.A.E, Sri Lanka, UK, India and within her native Pakistan, Syed weaves the history of the location-specific craft of textile production with tales of political resistance.
Raed Yassin had chosen an unorthodox and innovative way of attempting to represent – ‘frieze’ as it were- important historical events of Lebanese contemporary history. His work struggles with the impossibility of reading things of the past in a comprehensive way.