Japanese dolls, writing competition and fine art in Bahrain
Time Out Bahrain staff
The 39th Annual Fine Arts Exhibition One of the biggest events on the island’s arts calendar, the annual fine arts exhibition is scheduled to run until mid month but there’s a strong possibility it will be extended.
First established in 1972, this 39th edition takes place as part of the programme of Manama, the Capital of Arab Tourism 2013.
According to the blurb it’s ‘free of any particular title or artistic direction, artists’ contributions this year have been encouraged to be as spontaneous and uninhibited as possible to allow for a wide-ranging artistic and cultural debate, unconfined by any formal restrictions or boundaries. Full artistic expression will be showcased unhindered for local audiences’.
It all sounds a bit pretentious but don’t be put off, this show really does spotlight some of the very best local and international talent giving Bahrain the chance to bat well above its weight on the arts scene.
Keep your eyes open for works by Waheeda Mullah who joins a host of previous luminaries as winner of the prestigious Al Dana Prize. Until Feb 16, 8am-8pm, Bahrain National Museum. Call (17 298 744).
Hussein Madi at Albareh Gallery Hussein Madi was born in Chebaa, Lebanon in 1938. He lived between Rome and Beirut from 1973-1986, and eventually settled in Beirut in 1986. In Lebanon he taught sculpture and engraving at the Institute of Fine Arts of the Lebanese University and, from 1958 to 1962, at ALBA.
Since 1965, Madi has had more than 50 solo exhibitions in Lebanon and internationally demonstrating his outstanding talents as a painter, sculptor, printmaker and designer.
His work has been shown at the Venice Biennial, the British Museum and Tokyo’s Ueno Museum.
Inspired by nature, he Joyfully experiments with colour and form. His subjects are women, bulls, birds, trees... ‘anything that has a beginning and an end’.
This exhibition showcases a collection of Madi’s sculptures and collages as well as limited Lithographs and prints. Until Feb 15, Sat-Thu 10am-1pm and 4-8pm, Albareh Gallery, Adliya. Call (17 717 707).
Shahnaz Fayaz at World Beat Fayaz’s collection of paintings, entitled Reflections, shares her experiences through colourful and vibrant images influenced by her roots in India and her educational and eventful life spanning more than three decades in Bahrain.
She’ll be on hand at the opening on Saturday, February 2, from 4-6 pm to meet visitors and chat about her work at a free event open to everyone.
If you miss the opening, drop in anytime and treat yourself to a little culture and a cuppa at the café. Feb 2-28, opening night 4-6pm then 8am-1pm and 4-8pm, World Beat Fitness Centre Café, Janabiya. Call (17 612 576).
Rafa Nasiri at Bahrain Financial Harbour In Support of World Cancer Day, Being In the Moment featuring the latest work of Iraqi artist Rafa Nasiri is running throughout the month at BFH’s fine art gallery.
The public opening is on Monday, Feb 4, and part of the proceeds of sales from the show will go to support the work of Bahrain Cancer Society.
Nasiri is a renowned contemporary Iraqi painter, known for his ‘cosmicscapes’ in which he merges abstraction with Arabic calligraphy and other elements of his culture. He studied painting in Iraq and then went on to study graphic art in China and Portugal. Between 1974 and 2001 he joined several professional graphic studios in Salzburg, London, Baghdad and Amman. He also taught painting, graphic art and graphic design in Iraq, Jordan and Bahrain from 1964 to 2003 and is described as ‘an internationally renowned artist and definitely one of the most celebrated in the Arab world, who’s work has as much relevance today as it did years ago’. Feb 4-28. Public opening 7pm Mon, Feb 4 then Sun-Thu 10am-7pm and Fri/Sat 3-7pm, Bahrain Financial Harbour. Call (17 102 600).
Dolls of Japan The Dolls of Japan introduces the country’s representative dolls. In Japan, dolls have been a part of everyday life since ancient times and Japanese dolls reflect the customs of the country and the aspirations of its people. They possess distinctive regional attributes and, over the centuries, have developed in many diverse forms. Dolls also provide a showcase for traditional Japanese craft products, such as textiles, and it’s hoped the dolls in this exhibition will help visitors appreciate these various aspects of Japanese culture. Feb 10-Mar 2, opening night 7pm then daily, 8am-8pm, Bahrain National Museum. Call (17 298 744). and BD3 for non-members. Call (17 612 576).
Mosaic Art as Therapy World Beat Fitness Centre and Café has it’s monthly Tea & Coffee Talk Morning on Thursday, February 21, featuring the island’s first mosaic artist Faiza Saeed.
She will touch on the therapeutic aspect of mosaic art, which fosters creativity while cultivating a relaxing and meditative environment, and will share examples of how students from previous workshops have used mosaics as a means of healing and fortifying themselves.
Afterwards there’ll be a chance to chat with Saeed, preview some of her work and register for her upcoming mosaic workshop at World Beat in April. Thu, Feb 21, 9.45-11.30am, World Beat Fitness Centre, Janabiya. Entry BD2 for members and BD3 for non-members. Call (17 612 576).
Bahrain Writers’ Circle competition The island’s biggest ever writing competition, which has some seriously impressive prizes, closes for entries at the end of the month with judging taking place in March.
The challenge, which is open to Bahrainis and resident expats, is to write a medium-length novel (30-35,000 words) in English. All genres are welcome - thriller, science-fiction, romance, crime, horror - as long as there is no religious criticism or political agenda of any kind and the content can be read by anyone.
Non-native English speakers need not worry too much about the perfection of the language, it can be edited later, but the key to the competition is to be creative, to have a captivating story line and plot and to showcase Bahrain by incorporating the culture, architecture, history and people of the island.
The winner and two runners-up will have their stories professionally published, both as a hardcopy paperback and as an ebook for Amazon’s Kindle, Apple’s eBookstore etc, and receive royalties thereafter. There’s no sign-up fee and absolutely anyone can enter which organiser hope will really put the island on the map. More details can be found at www.bahrainwriterscircle.com.