BBC: Art in Saudi Arabia: Appetite fuels public displays

Although Jeddah is known as the cultural capital of the country, those involved in the art world are having to be inventive when it comes to creating exhibition spaces and giving the public the opportunity to view new works of art.

Jeddah, the gateway to Mecca, won an Aga Khan Award for Architecture prize in 1983 for its innovative Hajj terminal. But the new transport hubs offer even greater opportunities for Saudi artists to shine. Airport authorities are consulting with advisers and commissioners to acquire art work, among them Saudi director general of the Institut du Monde Arabe in Paris, Mona Khazindar.

The Hajj Terminal is a tented structure that covers 120 acres and 2.8 million square feet and accommodates massive groups from all over the world in a short timeframe It received the 2010 American Institute of Architects (AIA) Twenty-Five Year award. The AIA Twenty-five Year Award recognizes an architectural project that has stood the test of time ( 25 years). The space serves as a gateway for millions of pilgrims who journey to the holy city of Mecca each year. (Fabric Architecture / Fabric Structures).
The Hajj Terminal is a tented structure that covers 120 acres and 2.8 million square feet and accommodates massive groups from all over the world in a short timeframe It received the 2010 American Institute of Architects (AIA) Twenty-Five Year award. The AIA Twenty-five Year Award recognizes an architectural project that has stood the test of time ( 25 years). The space serves as a gateway for millions of pilgrims who journey to the holy city of Mecca each year. (Fabric Architecture / Fabric Structures).

“As yet Jeddah has no public museum so this is a new way of bringing art to children – through field trips,” explains Raneem Farsi, co-curator of 21,39. “We bring them here by bus. In that way we tailor ways of making art accessible in line with our religion and the criteria of our country.”

The exhibition, the inaugural show by the newly-formed Saudi Art Council, a non-profit umbrella organisation that is helping Saudi contemporary artists exhibit at home and abroad, marks a turning point for culture in the Kingdom.

The Council is publishing art books but more significantly obtaining loans from collectors of works by pioneering Saudi artists of the 1970s. Artists like Safiyya Binzagr, who laid the foundations of today’s art in the Kingdom by studying abroad and bringing back new ideas and painting styles.

Learn more via Art in Saudi Arabia: Appetite fuels public displays

Related: Aga Khan Award for Architecture – 1983 Cycle Awards Recipients and  Hajj Terminal Project Brief

 

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s