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Live Sculpting Starts At Riyadh's Tuwaiq Sculpture 2023

Thirty artists from across the world will create monumental sculptures for the fourth Tuwaiq Sculpture edition in Riyadh. These sculptures will remain forever as part of the city's urban landscape.

The annual sculpture event, themed "Energy of Harmony," will take place from January 8 to February 10 and will include live sculpture in addition to a public program of more than 65 events, including panel discussions and interactive workshops.

The community events for Tuwaiq Sculpture will be held in Durrat Al-Riyadh and Riyadh Art Space at JAX District, with beginner- and intermediate-level activities being done in both English and Arabic.

The culmination of Tuwaiq Sculpture will be an exhibition that will take place from February 5–10.

The curator Marek Wolynski created "Energy of Harmony," which explores the constant synthesis of conflicting forces that lies at the core of human existence. It inspires artists to rethink the possibilities for sculpture and to document the fleeting ways in which change is introduced, observed, and experienced.

An official announcement states that a judging team of specialists chose the participating sculptors from among 650 submissions that were submitted in response to an open invitation. The artists, who come from 20 different nations, including Austria, China, France, Georgia, Germany, Italy, Japan, Spain, and Switzerland, as well as a sizable representation from Saudi Arabia, have displayed their works internationally, and some of them hold academic positions in the discipline of sculpture.

Since the event's inception, this year will be the first time that Tuwaiq Sculpture has used Saudi Arabian stone, notably granite and sandstone. Project manager for the Tuwaiq Sculpture, Sarah Al-Ruwayti, gave the following explanation: “The decision to use stones from our local quarries poses symbolic significance for Tuwaiq Sculpture, specifically to highlight Saudi Arabia’s rich history with the medium, from ancient artifacts to rock carvings and modern-day sculpture. In addition, we wanted local and international artists to connect with material drawn directly from the country’s environment. (This) granite and sandstone, once transformed into beautiful artworks, will fill Riyadh’s public spaces, from parks to cultural and commercial areas for residents and visitors to see and appreciate.”

Tuwaiq Sculpture, which was introduced in 2019, is a component of the extensive Riyadh Art program, one of the biggest public art initiatives currently being conducted worldwide. With more than 1,000 works of art planned for exhibition around the Saudi capital, Riyadh Art, the first national public art initiative in the Kingdom, aims to transform the city into a "gallery without walls."

Ninety notable local and foreign artists as well as countless visitors have collaborated on Tuwaiq Sculpture's projects thus far.

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