Cultural Narratives’ rapidly growing collection of emerging and established artists is mapping the art world from the MENA region with its travelling exhibition. During Art Dubai this March a great show at Al-Serkal drew 20,000 visitors, including an unexpected visit from the father of Iranian art Ferydoun Ave, who brought his 20x20cm artwork and hung it himself in the Iranian section of the show. The next morning, Ferydoun came back to ask if he could “hijack” a hundred pages of Selections’ September issue. Without a second thought, I welcomed the “hijack” in a curated section of this issue – especially since the Iranian art scene is buzzing with an edgy, adventurous vibe.
It was my privilege to revisit the Dalloul Art Foundation (DAF) collection under the guidance of Dr. Ramzi Dalloul himself, who flew in from London for the occasion. A film documents this important journey through the history of Arab art, and it is available on the Selections website (www.selectionsarts.com). Dr. Dalloul has curated a number of artworks from his collection that best exemplify the cultural scene on this side of the world. He’s also shared with us his amazing commission of a massive Dia El-Azzawi drawing in the form of a tapestry. You can read about it in a separate article.
This issue of Selections also includes the first in a series of special reports by the Arab Image Foundation that shed light on the introduction of photography into the Middle East. Another article entitled “The People’s Painter” celebrates the 25th anniversary retrospective at the Beirut Art Fair devoted to legendary painter Paul Guiragossian. His daughter Manuela Guiragossian generously provides “a map of her father’s life.”
A big project on which we had the pleasure of working is the following special edition, Being Nadim Karam. It’s an issue of Selections that’s completely dedicated to the Lebanese artist. Experience a year in the life of the artist, at his studio, in his thoughts, through his artistic struggles and into his discoveries.
As for major regional events, September highlights include Cultural Narratives’ Kuwait show at CAP from October 12 to November 12. If you find yourself in the region, it would be our honour to welcome you at the show. We are also launching the Selections Art Journal, which consists of an international art collection guide. Find out which ones to visit around the world and why.
And if you find yourself in Paris between September 6 and 10, visit the Maison et Objet exhibition, where you can discover new and established designers showing their latest creations, including my new design collection of chairs.