News Highlights - October

LEADING BAHRAINI artist Shaikh Rashid bin Khalifa Al Khalifa’s groundbreaking achievements as a painter beginning in the 60s are featured in the book "Rashid bin Khalifa Al Khalifa - 40 years of painting from himself, by himself, for himself". The retrospective book is the first major survey of his work and is a giant step towards understanding the ongoing vitality of his practice.

Shaikh Rashid began creating art in the '60s to the present searching for ways to re-imagine painting. His retrospective oeuvre is a visual journey that threads through modern painting's history - from landscapes, figurative, two-dimension and abstract colour field painted on "convex" shaped canvas.

The book also covers an impressive range of productivity in Shaikh's practice in many forms - sketches, photography, interior design and graphic design.  The impressive 146 page hardback contains over 200 beautiful colour photographs, a creative meditation and an historical testimony of one man’s dedication to arts - an exciting addition to any fine arts aficionados’ library. 

The book not only serves to create awareness of Shaikh Rashid’s art but also serves as an excellent support to charity as all sales will go to an aid organisation.

Available at Jashanmal’s Bookstore, Seef Mall branch.

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October 2010


With a PhD in Nihonga painting from the Tokyo University of the Arts, Takashi Murakami has
developed a signature style where the most modern techniques combine with the skill and precision of traditional Japanese art, particularly
ukiyo-e (floating world) prints. Inspired by manga and kawaii (cute) culture, his irresistible world is inhabited by monstrous or charming characters the mischievous descendents of past myths.

In 2001, Murakami established the Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. based in Tokyo and New York, and now also in Los Angeles, a veritable breeding ground for artists that produces exhibitions, animated films, events such as the GEISAI contemporary art fair, as well as catalogues and merchandise goods.

The ‘Superflat’ aesthetic that Murakami theorized in 2000 attempts to blur the line between high and low art through all mediums including painting, sculpture, wallpaper, animation, fashion, and merchandise.
Since his first monographic exhibition outside Japan in 1995 at Galerie Emmanuel Perrotin,
Murakami has become recognized as one of the
most prominent contemporary artists of his time, and his work has been featured in numerous
solo exhibitions at museums and art institutions throughout the world, including The Meaning
of the Nonsense of the Meaning
in New York at the Center for Curatorial Studies Museum,
Bard College in 1999, P.S.1 in Long Island City, NY (2000), Grand Central Station in 2001, the Fondation Cartier and the Serpentine Gallery in 2002, the Rockefeller Center in 2003, and recently in the traveling retrospective ©MURAKAMI, shown first at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los
Angeles in 2007, then followed by shows at the Brooklyn Museum in New York, the Museum für Moderne Kunst (MMK) in Frankfurt, and the
Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao.
As a curator, Murakami challenges accepted notions of history and culture. With his three-part Superflat exhibition, which toured in major museums in America and Europe, he attempted to introduce Japanese artists, animators, cartoonists,
etc., to an international audience, under the premise that such categories of creativity are not as rigid in the Japanese system and might all be thought of as “art.” In 2005, the exhibition’s final installation, Little Boy, suggested a new interpretation of history through a political exposition of the A-bomb and postwar Japanese popular culture.

He became known to the general public when fashion designer Marc Jacobs first asked him to reinterpret the Louis Vuitton monogram for their
Spring/Summer 2003 line. And thus the collaboration began, as well as through his two animated films, SUPERFLAT MONOGRAM (2003) and
SUPERFLAT First Love (2009), where Murakami’s characters are immersed in a psychedelic, multicoloured, Vuitton universe.
In 2008, Time magazine named him as one of the 100 most influential personalities in the world. Takashi Murakami was born in 1962 in Tokyo, Japan. He lives and works in Tokyo, New York, and Los Angeles.
Murakami-Versailles is an exceptional occasion
which sees the Château of Versailles reconnect
with the artists of its day through the medium
of a walk allowing you to (re)discover the known
and unknown spaces of the estate.

If there is a place where risks must be taken
to create a true expression of our era and not
an imitation, which is often easy to do, it is
Versailles. Contemporary artistic creation allows
another perception of this living, ever-changing
monument. It is not a fixed model of one
single era, it is difficult to define, but, like every
element of our heritage, the fruit of a complex
amalgamation of expressions and interventions,
contemporary ones included. Artistic creation
contributes a little to breaking the clichés
surrounding this location which materialise in the
uses of the spaces, which are sometimes conventional
and narrow. By revealing its complexity,
its substance, its different layers which have been
buried under habit, it is a question of offering new
points of view of a site which everyone believes
they already know.

Murakami-Versailles is a walk, a trail through the
“landscape area” of Versailles. For his first major
retrospective in France, in the 15 rooms of the
Château and in the gardens, the artist presents
22 major works, , of which 11 have been created
exclusively for this exhibition. The general public
will be able to view and admire his creations,
which are often technical masterpieces.
The allegories and other myths of Versailles thus
carry on a dialogue with the dreamlike creatures
of Takashi Murakami, sometimes inspired by traditional
Japanese art. “I seek to produce a creative
process which is a bridge between the past and
the future” he likes to remind us.
Portrait de Takashi Murakami
All Artworks © Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All Rights Reserved
Photo : Kenji Yagi
Takashi MURAKAMI - Oval Buddha Gold - 2007-2010
Bronze & gold leaf - 18.6 x 10,21 x 10.46 feet
Courtesy galerie Emmanuel Perrotin, Paris.
© 2007-2010 Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All Rights Reserved.
photo : Florian Kleinefenn - Château de Versailles
Takashi MURAKAMI - Oval Buddha Silver - 2008
Sterling Silver - 4.47 x 2.64 x 2.55 feet - 136.5 x 80.5 x 78 cm
© 2008 Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd.All Rights Reserved.
photo : Florian Kleinefenn - Château de Versailles/Salon de l’Abondance
Takashi MURAKAMI - Oval Buddha Silver - 2008
Sterling Silver - 4.47 x 2.64 x 2.55 feet - 136.5 x 80.5 x 78 cm
© 2008 Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd.All Rights Reserved.
photo : Florian Kleinefenn - Château de Versailles/Salon de l’Abondance
Murakami Versailles

14 September to 12 December


The temporary installation of the works of one of the best-known artists on the contemporary scene, at one of the most visited monuments in the world is a surprising ‘story within a story’. It is the question of the in situ which underlies this proposition. Numerous cultural institutions have attempted ‘clashes’ in recent years between historical heritage and contemporary work. The radicality of this exhibition seems different to us, as much through the chosen location as through the structure of the journey.

Echo, dialectic, opposition, counterpoint … it is not our role to decide. This unique experience seeks above all to spark a reflection on the contemporary nature of our monuments and the indispensable need to create our own era. Notre Dame, Les Invalides, the Panthéon, the Louvre, Versailles, to name but a few of the best-known, contemporary in their time, are genuinely multilayered with numerous interventions, beside which Murakami-Versailles is on a more modest scale. And yet on each occasion there are the
same objectives : never to minimise the singular character of every artistic gesture and never to turn the pure imagination of the creator into heritage.

Some principles which have guided us for this unique three months experience : avoid the trap of contemporary art “integrated” with the historical monument; (re)discover a space; rejoice about working with a living artist and the resulting emotions, failures and surprises; give pleasure. Trust one of the best artists of our time to reveal another Versailles, a Versailles of today, a living monument from the perspective of its utility value; this is the intention of this event. Through sensual pleasures, the walk, a new labyrinth of
Versailles, has the purpose of both distracting and entertaining the walker, beyond the clichés. This is an ephemeral extravagance, a risk to be taken. Versailles, formerly a “field of experiments and a multidisciplinary laboratory” for the most audacious creations, notably during parties, deserves this contemporary artistic expression.

Laurent Le Bon
Curator of the exhibition
Director of the Centre Pompidou-Metz
Bob Dylan
The Brazil Series

4 September 2010 - 30 January 2011

National Gallery of Denmark

Dylan has always worked on other projects concurrently with his music. Since the 1960s he has, among other things, worked with pictorial art. A number of album covers and small-scale exhibitions have been visible signs of Dylan’s early work as a visual artist. According to Dylan, an artist must always be moving and changing, and so an oscillation between different modes of expression strikes him as entirely natural.
“I have always painted. I have always held on to that one way or another.” 1978

Dylan created the paintings of The Brazil Series specifically for the exhibition at National Gallery of Denmark, meaning that this is the first time they are accessible to the general public.

The series comprises approximately 40 canvases depicting Brazilian scenes, hence the title The Brazil Series. According to Dylan himself, this exhibition is an accurate reflection of his endeavours as a visual artists; an area of work which has received increasingly intensive focus from the artist himself in recent years.

The subject matter in The Brazil Series is gathered from widely different Brazilian settings. All of the scenes depicted take their point of departure in reality as we see it, often incorporating a narrative with a clearly discernable story.
The Kingdom of Bahrain
(Artiglierie dell’Arsenale)
Reclaim, Bahrain Urban Research Team (Tamadher Al Fahal; Muna
Yateem; Fay Al Khalifa; Deena Ashraf; Fatema Al-Hammadi; Mohammed Al-Qari); LAPA (Harry Gugger; Leopold Banchini; Simon Chessex; Russell Loveridge; Ning Liu) and Camille Zakharia (photographer and engineer) and Mohammed Bu Ali (producer)
Commissioner: Min of Culture & Information; Noura Al-Sayeh.
Curators: Noura Al-Sayeh;
Fuad Al-Ansari.
OUT OF fifty-two participating countries at the twelfth Venice Architecture Biennale held last August, the Kingdom of Bahrain has been awarded the Golden Lion for the best national pavilion.

With the range of vast urban developments that Kingdom of Bahrain could have included in this Exhibition, curators Noura Al-Sayeh and Fuad Al-Ansari, focused on plans to develop areas along its shores where water has receded. The pavillion showcased three traditional fisherman’s huts from Bahrain. In the citation for the prize, the Venice Biennale jury said that it was “impressed by the choice,” which it described as a “lucid and forceful self-analysis of the nation’s relationship with its rapidly changing coastline.” This was the first year that Bahrain had participated in the biennial.

Here transient forms of architecture are presented as devices for reclaiming the sea as a form of public space: an exceptionally humble yet compelling response to People meet in architecture, the theme proposed by Exhibition Director Kazuyo Sejima.

Complimented by the jury for his “unique and uncompromising vision” is Japanese architect Junya Ishigami, recipient of the Golden Lion for best project. According to the jury, his exhibition titled Architecture as Air: Study for Château la Coste, “pushes the limits of materiality, visibility, tectonics, thinness, and ultimately of architecture itself.”

Finally, the Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement, a prize that had been announced earlier this year, was given to Dutch architect Rem Koolhaas.

The exhibition is accompanied by the publication of Bob Dylan. The Brazil Series. The book is the first publication to subject Bob Dylan’s visual art to serious, art-historical analysis and readings. Preface by Karsten Ohrt, Director at Statens Museum for Kunst Introduction and main article by Kasper Monrad, Chief Curator.
Special article by John Elderfield, former Chief Curator at the Museum of Modern Art, New York Price: 248 DKK
192 pages. Lavishly illustrated
ISBN 978-87-92023-46-9
Al Riwaq
Art Space
to host
Art's and Crafts'

The Kingdom of Bahrain receives the
Golden Lion Award
for "Best National Participation"
Noura Al-Sayeh
architect, co-curator
'Reclaim' video interview
by epiteszforum
The Jazz Master
by Bahraini artist, Abdulrahim Sharif goes under the hammer at Christie's International Modern &
Contemporary Art in the Middle East
26 October 2010.

The 2009 painting is part of the artist's 'Faces' series and is expected to fetch anything between $15,000 and $22,000.
The Jazz Master
Size: 130cm x 120cm
Year: 2009
Medium: Oil on canvas. joins the global art community with an online-only art gallery launching this October for which several established and promising emerging artists have already signed up.

The online gallery will serve as the world’s window to Bahraini art and at the same time create a global art market by specialising in the sale of modern and contemporary Bahraini art.

A quarterly online exhibition will showcase unseen artworks and aims to reach a large number of potential buyers from around the world. guarantees to deliver the highest standards of transparency and confidentiality in the purchase process by the use of a secure technology.

From December 2010 Al Riwaq Art Space will be hosting Market 338, an outdoor art's and crafts' market in Adliya's Block 338.

The open air market will be the first of its kind in the kingdom and will be located just outside Al Riwaq Art Space and will stretch all the way to Century Restaurant.

Al Riwaq Art Space main target
is to encourage and promote Bahraini designers and artists to exhibit and sell their works through the Market. This will also enable Bahrainis to take their talents seriously and to pursue careers out of their creativity and skills. Al Riwaq is also allowing 15% of the participants to be Bahrain Based or International designers, so everyone is welcome to apply.

For more information contact Al Riwaq Art Space directly on +97317717441 (or by email on with MARKET 338 Application
being the Subject of your email) in order to be advised on the best way of submitting. Accepted applicants will be notified by mid to late November, via email, so they need to make sure to leave
their email address clearly written on their CD cover. Please note that ONLY 40 applicants will be

(AP) September 20, 2010. A retired circus chimpanzee is the Cezanne of simians, drawing crowds to a Brazilian zoo to watch him paint. The 26-year-old chimp called Jimmy has been producing surprisingly lovely paintings each day for three weeks at the Niteroi Zoo.

Trainer Roched Seba said Monday Jimmy doesn t like the toys and other diversions that other chimps enjoy. So three weeks ago, Seba introduced him to painting after reading about animals in zoos elsewhere that enjoyed a little canvas time.

Temperamental as great artists can be, Jimmy at times declines to paint if his cage is surrounded by too many gawkers.

But for at least 30 minutes a day, he carefully dips his brush into plastic paint containers and uses broad, bold strokes to create his art.

Reprinted from Associated Press.

© 2010 Associated Press. All rights reserved. Licensed by for 200 recipients on September 21, 2010 . You may forward this article or obtain additional permissions at the following iCopyright license record and renewal locator: Press Association and Associated Press logos are registered trademarks of Press Association . The iCopyright logo is a registered trademark of iCopyright, Inc.

the painting chimp
draws hordes to Rio zoo
Jimmy, a 26-year-old chimpanzee paints on a cardboard at a zoo in Niteroi, Brazil, Monday, Sept. 20, 2010. The monkey s paintings have been catching everyone s attention at a Brazilian zoo, and an exhibition for Jimmy the chimp is already in the works. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)
Jimmy, a 26-year-old chimpanzee, and Roched Seba, who has been teaching him how to paint, caress themselves as Seba holds a painting made by the chimp at a zoo in Niteroi, Brazil, Monday, Sept. 20, 2010. The monkey s paintings have been catching everyone s attention at a Brazilian zoo, and an exhibition for Jimmy the chimp is already in the works. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)
Meem Gallery
opens the season with
Art in Iraq Today: Part I

12 October 2010

Curated by Dia Al-Azzawi, Art in Iraq Today: Part I is the first part of four exhibitions displaying contemporary Iraqi art this October.

Part I will exhibit the work of Modhir Ahmed, Nedim Kufi and Hanaa Malallah. The exhibition, and its supporting catalogue, is dedicated to the memory of Jabra Ibrahim Jabra and his seminal essays on modern Iraqi art, titled ‘Art in Iraq Today.’

Part II (Nov – Dec 2010) of the series, will exhibit the work of Ghassan Ghaib, Kareem Risan and Nazar Yahya;

Part III (Feb – Mar 2011): Himat Ali, Amar Dawod and Delair Shaker; and Part IV
(Mar – Apr 2011), the modern masters Dia Al-Azzawi, Rafa Al-Nasiri and Ali Talib.
More on Al Riwaq...

Al Riwaq’s new artist Café will open its doors on 10 October.  To highlight the event, the cafe is hosting, Doodlefest,  an interactive event which will allow visitors and participants to experience doodling as well as great and healthy food whilst listening to Bahrain’s emerging and underground DJ’s.   

Monday 20 October at 7 pm Al Riwaq Art Space will be hosting a solo exhibition by the Bahraini artist Jaffar Al Oraibi.

Call Al Riwaq on 17717441
About Modhir Ahmed

(b. Baghdad, 1956) received a BFA Major in Graphic Arts, from the Institute of Fine Arts in Baghdad in 1979, followed by a MFA Major in Painting, at the Academy of Fine Arts, Warsaw, in 1986, and also studied Computer Graphics in Skövde from 1990-1991.

About Nedim Kufi

(b. Baghdad, 1962) received his BA in Etching from the Fine Arts Institute, Baghdad,
in 1985, followed by a BA in Graphic Design from HKU, Utrecht, in 2002. He is currently doing an MA in Design from artEZ, Enschede.

About Hanaa Malallah

(b. Thee Qar, 1958) received a Diploma in Graphic Art from the Institute of Fine Arts, Baghdad in 1979, followed by a BA in Painting from the Academy of Fine Arts, Baghdad in 1988 and an MA in Painting from Baghdad University in 2000. In 2005, Malallah completed her PhD
in the Philosophy of Painting, at Baghdad University, where she wrote her thesis on Logic Order In Ancient Mesopotamian Painting. She also holds a Postgraduate Certificate in Islamic and Modern Art
from SOAS, London.
Modhir Ahmed, Untitled (2010), mixed media,  50x70cm
Nedim Kufi, Absence (2010), 180 x 240 cm (180 x 120 cm each), diptych
Hanaa Malallah, Portraits (HOOPOE) (2010), Folded burnt canvas, mixed media and oil colour on canvas, 150 x 150 cm
Light News....

Jimmy, a 26-year-old chimpanzee paints on a cardboard at a zoo in Niteroi, Brazil, Monday, Sept. 20, 2010. The monkey s paintings have been catching everyone s attention at a Brazilian zoo, and an exhibition for Jimmy the chimp is already in the works. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)

Light News....
This unique institution is dedicated to the celebration of artistic effort, however misguided. Check out their website to see more masterpieces they have gathered from trash piles and trift stores.
Museum of Bad Art

Art Too
To Be Ignored

art gallery coming shortly
About Meem Gallery

Since its launch in 2007, Meem Gallery has established itself as a leading specialist in the Arab art world. The gallery's aim is to promote the work of modern and contemporary Middle Eastern artists, and inspire viewers to engage with, and gain a deeper appreciation for, the art of this region. Meem's strength lies in its unparalleled access to both private and public collections of the world's leading artists. In its first year, the gallery distinguished itself by gaining exclusive representation rights in Dubai for the work of Ali Omar Ermes and Nja Mahdaoui, bringing their art to the Emirates for the first time. Other prominent artists exhibited at Meem include Dia Al-Azzawi, pioneer of modern Arab art; eminent sculptor, Parviz Tanavoli; internationally acclaimed filmmaker and photographer Abbas Kiarostami; leading Turkish artist Ismail Acar; respected Gulf artist Abdullah Al-Muharraqi; and the rising star of the contemporary Arab art world, Hamza Bounoua.