saudi arabia

Photography exhibit offers rare glimpse into Saudi society

Works of 10 award-winning Saudi photographers now on display in Al Serkal Avenue

12:31 February 4, 2018
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Dubai: Project Space Art Jameel in Al Serkal Avenue is currently exhibiting a collection of photographs captured by a new generation of young image-makers based in Saudi Arabia.

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Sami Altokhais, Titled: 'The Empty Quarter', Najran, Saudi Arabia, 2017

The exhibition ‘Saudi Seen’ presents myriad work ranging from intimate vignettes detailing women’s narratives by photographers Eman Al Dabbagh and Tasneem Al Sultan, to commanding images of Saudi landscapes by Adriano Pimenta, Akram Alamoudi and Moath Alofi.

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Sami Altokhais, Titled: 'A girl in Tanomah',  Asir Region, Saudi Arabia, 2017

Artist Filwa Nazer showcases her photo collage feature pictures of her childhood in the 1980s.

The group of 10 award-winning photographers also include: Bader Awwad Al Balawi, Kholood Saleh Al Bakr, Majid Angawi and Sami Al Tokhais.

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Bader Awwad Albalawi Titled: 'Karasi', 2014

“With the rise of photography as a hobby and an artistic practice over the past couple of decades, Saudi Arabia has witnessed the growth of a generation of photographers who are expressing themselves through images,” programme manager Lana Shamma told Gulf News.

For visitors, the gallery provides a rare glimpse into Saudi society and the personal lives of its citizens.

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Iman Al-Dabbagh, From the Not 3eib (Shameless) series, Titled: 'My daughter dancing'2016 – 2017

“My practice in documentary photography showcases the change in and bridges the past to the future that we are moving towards. I hope to vary the imagery that exists when people are exploring Saudi Arabia online and offer an alternative perspective.”commented Kholood Albakr. 

The history of photography in Saudi Arabia is as old as the discovery of oil since it was oil companies who were among the first to import cameras, darkroom materials and bring in photographers.

Saudi Arabia has seen drastic changes in his urbanisation and landscapes since the 1950s which have been documented through photography.

The exhibition was organised by the Art Jameel curatorial team and also offers a catalogue essay by writer and academic Maha Al Senan, who specialises in modern and contemporary Saudi art and heritage.

‘Saudi Scene’ is free and open to the public from 10 am until 6pm daily (except Fridays). The exhibition ends on Tuesday February 13.