x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 21 July 2017

the creative roll

A closer look at the six artists in the Emirati Expressions exhibits.

An aluminium sculpture by Layla Juma, one of an identical pair, at the third Emirati Expressions at Manarat Al Saadiyat. Courtesy Emirati Expressions
An aluminium sculpture by Layla Juma, one of an identical pair, at the third Emirati Expressions at Manarat Al Saadiyat. Courtesy Emirati Expressions

Abdullah Al Saadi

Despite – or perhaps in reaction to – the rapid urbanisation of the UAE, Al Saadi explores the evolution of the relationship between humans and their surroundings. His examinations of nature are meticulous; his creative process echoes the methodologies of scientific inquiry and classification. Al Saadi’s work juxtaposes nature and culture, using an elaborate, unique symbolic language.

Ebtisam Abdulaziz

Abdulaziz works with video, photography and performance art, which are transformed into final pieces via her installation process. Thematically, her works focus on human narratives, exploring social constructions and power structures. In describing her works, Abdulaziz says that the purpose of her work is to document the spectrum of human experience.

Layla Juma

Currently, Juma’s work takes the form of computer-generated drawings in which the artist analyses the intersections of recurring geometric forms. Conceptually, her new work alludes to both the fragmentation and intersection of human experience. It is a meditation on the way we interact with nature via lines, geometric forms and spatial arrangements.

Mohamed Al Mazrouei

Al Mazrouei’s artworks are categorised as part of the neo-expressionist movement, yet the artist himself deliberately attempts to distort and even transcend traditional artistic and intellectual boundaries. His paintings explore themes of rage, desire and petulance. Stylistically, his use of pronounced brush strokes, line and colour forsake traditional painting in favour of provocative imagery that conveys the distorting effect of emotion on the human form.

Mohammed Ahmed Ibrahim

Ibrahim’s interests in the circular form, archaeology and land art enabled him to conceptually explore the fleeting nature of time and the omnipresent process of decay. His works, therefore, physically exemplify one moment in an eternal process of evolution, both claiming an identity outside of the cycle of nature and yet participating in the process of natural evolution.

Mohammed Kazem

Kazem works primarily in photography, capturing images of himself in the midst of performance. His work examines larger social forces and issues, by employing his own body as a metaphor for his personal experience and biography. It is through that subjective experience that Kazem conceptualises and attempts to understand how the forces of globalisation, ­environmental sustainability and materialism transform his culture into a modern society.

• Excerpts taken from the Emirati Expressions catalogue

aseaman@thenational.ae