New York just hosted a Saudi art exhibition with ‘Humanity’ as the theme, and it was launched around the same time humanitarian discussions took place at the UN headquarters in the cosmopolitan American city. The art show took place in a gallery in Manhattan’s China Town, where art created by Arab artists, that have a focus on humanity, were on display.
Arab News supported and sponsored the event alongside nonprofit organization, “Saudi Signatures,” whose mission is to raise awareness about the kingdom’s heritage, culture and local art talents. Also in support of the art exhibition, New York based Saudi students from a number of universities, volunteered to guide visitors around the exhibition.
Visitors to the art show focused on the importance of humanity can expect to see a video created by Arab News, with photographs of Saudi people taken in the country on the venue’s ground floor, whilst the top floor will host paintings created by female Saudi artists.
Dr. Mariam Al Eissa is the founder of Saudi Signatures, and had originally set up the organization in London whilst she was studying, and later launched it in America after moving there. Speaking to Arab News, Dr. Mariam talked about the significance of Saudi Signatures, “We are a group of artists who organize events trying to promote Saudi and Arab artists. ‘Humanity’ is a very sensitive topic but usually nobody draws a lot about humanity unless you ask for it.
“What we present is a different visual language where it’s self-explanatory,” she continued, “Because art is the language that everyone speaks, I think this is the best way to deliver the message that we need to stimulate the humanitarian part of every person by this event.” The Saudi art exhibition also encouraged visitors to partake in an interactive piece of art, entitled You, inviting them to dip their hands in white paint and imprinting on a large wall canvas.
Internationally acclaimed artist, Mohamad Hafez, who has over a decade’s experience of living within the kingdom prior to moving to America, also spoke of the New York based exhibition and conveyed his thoughts, “Art is a very powerful tool. It was very heartwarming to see the beauty and complexity of the rich Arab culture displayed here,” adding, “Politicians want to build walls, but it is the artists’ responsibility to destroy these walls. Art is to build bridges. When cultures realize how much we all have in common, it is hard to then paint us with one wide brushstroke. In this exhibition, we are humanizing the population and we are giving a taste of Saudi. If you don’t believe us, see for yourself.”