The vibrancy of the art scene in Doha is evident from the fact that although the Covid-19 outbreak halted physical activities it has not dampened the spirit of artists and art lovers.
Though there have been many online exhibitions, real time art shows are also fast returning to the city.
Art lovers and the artists got a chance to enjoy new works and creative ideas during the ‘2nd Anniversary Exhibition’ inaugurated at Katara Art Center, Building 5 on Wednesday evening.
Observing Covid-19 related restrictions, visitors and artists attended the opening day of the three-week-long exhibition organised by Qatar Art Spots, an online art platform set up two years ago by a Syrian expatriate.
As many as 35 art pieces are on display at the gallery by 29 Qatar-based artists of diverse backgrounds.
Some of the artists are established names in their field but the majority of the participants in the exhibition are emerging talents like the art group that organised the exhibition.
The art pieces on display cover a wide range of subjects.
The artists have used different art techniques and styles to highlight a subject or an issue creatively.
The art lovers were seen taking a keen interest in the creative pieces as they interacted with the artists.
The exhibition is organised and curated by Dana Said, who is a Syrian artist and designer.
She started her Instagram page – Qatar Art Spots – two years ago soon after she came to Doha.“It is a digital platform. The idea behind it is to show all the activities in the town and support the local talent. I see Doha has emerging art scenes that are already very dynamic, diverse and vibrant.”
Dana, a qualified artist and interior designer, started the online platform to share information about art activities in the city.“When I came here I found it difficult and challenging to find all the information at one platform. I created the page where artists and art lovers can find all the information.
"I collect authentic information from the website of different museums and art galleries. I keep researching daily. The project has so far been very promising for the artists. I also provide information about the exhibitions, artists and the art works.”
The Syrian artist sees her first group exhibition as continuation of her online art platform.“We are actually celebrating the second anniversary of the platform. The exhibition is a sort of saying 'thank you' to the artists for supporting the platform and vice versa.
Some artists are known and others are emerging. Artists from other counties are also approaching me to have their works highlighted in Qatar and I hope to have an exhibition with international artists in future soon.
"I am thankful to Katara for the opportunity and hope to bring more shows to the facility.”
Pakistani artist Sumaira Aamer is one of the participants and she is elated to have the opportunity.“I have been in Qatar for over 10 years. I have done my MA degree in Fine Arts. I did majors in painting. I do miniatures as well as oil paintings. I have displayed one art piece that is named as ‘Mandolin That Speaks’.It is oil on canvass technique. It is inspired by cubism.
“I recently took part in an exhibition held at Sheikh Faisal Bin Qassim Al Thani Museum under the theme – Artists in times of Covid-19.
"I am the only artist from Qatar whose paintings are currently in the exhibition in Venice, Italy under the theme Future Landscapes in International Art and Architecture Festival.”
The emerging artist considered the digital platform started by Dana very important for both established and upcoming artists.“It is a good platform for those who want to pursue art as their career. It is very helpful for the artists to approach the galleries.
We need such platform as artists.”
Juan M Ramirez, Mexican photographer-artist and participant of the exhibition, has been taking photos since he was 11.“Now I am into digital photography. I always focus on watermelon in my art. I think watermelons are close to use humans. We have 75 % water.
We are red and juicy from inside and sometime sweet. I use it to represent reality in my own way and to be further away from the normal photographers.”
The Mexican sees lots of opportunities for the art in Qatar.“It is a budding place. Lots of new galleries are opening. It is good to be part of the exhibition and the platform that promotes arts from all countries.”