📘 E-Issue 05 ––VCE Fall 2022
  1. Editor’s Note
  2. What’s On in VCE
  3. Pop(Corn): UAE National Pavilion
  4. Rapport: Venice
  5. Zeitgeist of our Time: Füsun Onur for the Turkish Pavilion at the 59th Venice Biennale
  6. GAD’s Top Picks: National Pavilions
  7. Strangers to the Museum Wall: Kehinde Wiley’s Venice Exhibition Speaks of Violence and Portraiture
  8. Questioning Everyday Life: Alluvium by Ramin Haerizadeh, Rokni Haerizadeh and Hesam Rahmanian at OGR Torino in Venice

📒 E-Issue 04 ––IST Spring 2022
  1. Editor’s Note
  2. What’s On in IST
  3. Pop(Corn): Refik Anadol
  4. Rapport: Istanbul
  5. Independent Spaces in Istanbul: Sarp Özer on Operating AVTO

E-04++ Spring/Summer 2022
Creating an Artist Books Library in Istanbul: Aslı Özdoyuran on BAS
How Pearl Lam Built Her Gallery Between China and Europe
What’s On in the UAE: Our Top Summer Picks
DXB Art Jameel Joins The World Weather Network in a Groundbreaking Response to Global Climate Crisis
DXB “Geometry is Everywhere”: An Interview and Walking Tour of Order of Magnitude, Jitish Kallat’s Solo Exhibition at Dubai’s Ishara Art Foundation
“We Are Witnessing History”: Ramin Haerizadeh, Rokni Haerizadeh and Hesam Rahmanian On Their Retrospective Exhibition at NYU Abu Dhabi Art Gallery
 Istanbul’s 5533 Presents Nazlı Khoshkhabar’s “Around and Round”
HK Startbahn Presents “Made in Japan 3.0: Defining a New Phy-gital Reality”, an NFT Pop-Up at K11 Art Mall
DXB Dubai's Postmodern Architecture: Constructing the Future with 3dr Models
📘 E-Issue 03 –– TYO Fall 2021
  1. Editor’s Note
  2. What’s On in TYO
  3. Pop(Corn): Nimyu
  4. Ahmad The Japanese: Bady Dalloul on Japan and Belonging
  5. Rapport: Tokyo 
  6. Alexandre Taalba Redefines Virtuality at The 5th Floor
  7. Imagining Distant Ecologies in Hypersonic Tokyo: A Review of “Floating Between the Tropical and Glacial Zones”
  8. Ruba Al-Sweel Curates “Garden of e-arthly Delights” at SUMAC Space
  9. Salwa Mikdadi Reflects on the Opening of NYU Abu Dhabi’s Arab Center for the Study of Art

E-03++ Fall/Winter 2021-22
Art Dubai Digital, An Alternative Art World?
Must-See Exhibitions in Dubai - Art Week Edition 2022
Prepare The Ingredients and Let The Rest Flow: Miramar and Zaid’s “Pure Data” Premieres at Satellite for Quoz Arts Fest 2022
 Akira Takayama on McDonald’s Radio University, Heterotopia, and Wagner Project
AUH Woman as a Noun, and a Practice: “As We Gaze Upon Her” at Warehouse421
AAN The Labor of Art and the Art of Labor: Christopher Benton on His First Exhibition in Al Ain
IST “Once Upon a Time Inconceivable”: A Review and a Conversation
RUH Misk Art Institute’s Annual Flagship Exhibition Explores the Universality of Identity
RUH HH Prince Fahad Al Saud Discusses Saudi Arabia’s Artistic Renaissance
Engage101 Presents “Connected, Collected” at Sotheby’s Dubai

📕 E-Issue 02
NYC Spring 2021
  1. Editor’s Note
  2. What’s On in NYC
  3. Pop(Corn): Zeid Jaouni
  4. You Can Take The Girl Out Of The City 
  5. Rapport: NYC
  6. Kindergarten Records Discuss The Future of Electronic Music
  7. Sole DXB Brings NY Hip-Hop To Abu Dhabi
  8. Wei Han Finds ‘Home’ In New York
  9. Vikram Divecha: Encounters and Negotiations

E-02++ Spring/Summer 2021
DXB “After The Beep”: A Review and Some Reflections
OSA Rintaro Fuse Curates “Silent Category” at Creative Center Osaka
AUH “Total Landscaping”at Warehouse 421
TYO “Mimicry of Hollows” Opens at The 5th Floor
TYO Startbahn, Japan’s Leading Art Blockchain Company, Builds a New Art Infrastructure for the Digital Age
DXB There Is A You In The Cloud You Can’t Delete: A Review of “Age of You” at Jameel Arts Centre
BAH Mihrab: Mysticism, Devotion, and Geo-Identity
LDN Fulfilment Services Ltd. Questions Techno-Capitalism on Billboards in London
DXB Ana Escobar: Objects Revisited
TYO BIEN Opens Two Solo Exhibitions in Island Japan and Parcel
CTU/AUH/YYZ Sabrina Zhao: Between Abu Dhabi, Sichuan, and Toronto
RUH Noor Riyadh Shines Light on Saudi Arabia’s 2030 Art Strategy
DXB A Riot Towards Landscapes
DXB A ‘Menu Poem’ and All That Follows
DXB Alserkal Art Week Top Picks 
DXB Permeability and Regional Nodes: Sohrab Hura on Curating Growing Like a Tree at Ishara Art Foundation
AUH Re-viewing Contrasts: Hyphenated Spaces at Warehouse421
DXB There’s a Hurricane at the Foundry

📙 E-Issue 01 –– AUH/DXB Summer 2020 
  1. Editor’s Note 
  2. What’s On in the UAE
  3. Pop(Corn): Hashel Al Lamki
  4. Tailoring in Abu Dhabi
  5. Rapport: Dubai 
  6. Michael Rakowitz From the Diaspora

E-01++ Fall/Winter 2020-21
GRV MIA Anywhere Hosts First Virtual Exhibition of Female Chechen Artists    
DXB Sa Tahanan Collective Redefines Home for Filipino Artists
SHJ Sharjah Art Foundation Jets Ahead on the Flying Saucer
AUH SEAF Cohort 7 at Warehouse 421 
DXB 101 Strikes Again with Second Sale at Alserkal Avenue
DXB Spotlight on Dubai Design Week 2020
DXB Melehi’s Waves Complicate Waving Goodbye
DXB Kanye Says Listen to the Kids: Youth Takeover at Jameel Arts Centre
DAM Investigating the Catalogues of the National Museum of Damascus
AUH Ogamdo: Crossing a Cultural Highway between Korea and the UAE
TYO James Jarvis Presents Latest Collages at 3110NZ
DXB Do You See Me How I See You?
DXB Thaely Kicks Off Sustainable Sneakers
AUH BAIT 15 Welcomes New Member Zuhoor Al Sayegh
MIA a_part Gives Artists 36 Hours to React

UAE Tawahadna Introduces MENA Artists to a Global Community
LHR/CAI Alaa Hindia’s Jewelry Revives Egyptian Nostalgia
DXB Taaboogah Infuses Comedy Into Khaleeji Menswear
DXB Meet Tamila Kochkarova Behind ‘No Boys Allowed’
DXB Alserkal Arts Foundation Presents Mohamed Melehi
AUH/DXB 101 Pioneers Ethical and Curious Art Collecting
AUH Sarah Almehairi Initiates Conversations
DXB Augustine Paredes Taking Up Space
LHR/MCT Hanan Sultan Rhymes Frankincense with Minimalism
BEY GAD Map: Arts & Culture Relief for Beirut

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🎙️ GAD Talk Series –– Season 1 2020
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Re-viewing Contrasts: Hyphenated Spaces at Warehouse421

By Hanan Sultan

Published on March 7th, 2021

        Hyphenated Spaces, a virtual exhibition curated by NYU Abu Dhabi students of Professor Salwa Mikdadi’s Curatorial Practice course, is currently being hosted at Warehouse421’s online platform until March 30th, 2021. The virtual exhibition, selecting thirty-four artworks by artists representing various geographies, periods, and styles, is a reinterpretation of Hashel Al Lamki’s The Cup and The Saucer, the artist's first solo exhibition, curated by Munira Al Sayegh, and also hosted at Warehouse 421’s Abu Dhabi space in the spring of 2020.

Overall, the online exhibition experience was positive. I was overwhelmingly surprised by the embedded virtual art gallery format and preferred it to a normal web presentation with static images, text, and video.

1. Installation view. Hyphenated Spaces: “The Cup and The Saucer” Reinterpreted, 15 December 2020 - 30 March 2021, hosted by Warehouse421. Virtual exhibition.

The Cup and The Saucer's multilayered aspects show the success of Al Lamki’s practice. His work centers around letting go of control and looking at his own work through new artists’ lenses, creating a certain complexity of creating and curating which goes beyond the exhibition space. Mr Lantern (2017-2019), for example, inspires individuals and artists to think about presentation while creating and manifesting. Its shapes and colors resonate with the viewer, and the installation as a whole has a certain capacity to inspire creative energy once the viewing experience over. The curators of Hyphenated Spaces reinterpreted 6 sub-themes that were directly taken from Hashel’s show: Birth and Earth; Rejection and Reflection; Versailles; Linger and Departure; Screensavers and Control and Guilt.

2. Hashel Al Lamki, Mr. Lantern (2017-2019). Clay, Fabric, cardboard, plastic, comb, mirror, LED lights. Image courtesy of Warehouse421 and the artist.

One of the main themes that Hyphenated Spaces explores is the concept of two things put together. This theme matters both visually and conceptually. Viewers realize a sense of contrast that starts a conversation or an inner dialog. A simple “why?” sparks the potential of many different possibilities and outcomes. The cup and the saucer are two objects that are put together in unity; however, they both can stand and function individually alone. “Why are they meant to be together? Why can they function separately and why are they compatible in their unity?” Similarly, the contrast between creating and curating is a sharp characteristic of the exhibition concept. “Curation is as important as creation.” The exhibition considers the way an artist’s work is presented as important as the work itself: how it is laid out, in what order, and in what composition. Should the viewer look at the art from the artist’s lens or through their own developed lens? “How do I want a viewer to perceive my artwork? What am I trying to communicate and how can I effectively do that?” The idea of “two things put together” is portrayed through three additional contrasts in the show. There are videos, images, and objects moving through time, but also photographs – still images frozen in time. The exhibition also presents us with visual art and poetry, a form of written art. A final form of contrast is the exposure to both historical and contemporary pieces.

Curation is as important as creation.

Student Sherry Wu curated the sub-theme “Re:jection- flection-born,” curated in response to Hashel’s sub-theme Rejection and Reflection. Sabrina Zhao’s My Unloving Love (2018) is an experimental video montage, a film that explores the contrasts of self-love and confidence. In her statement, the artist explains that the film is intentionally left incomplete and compares it to personal confessions of her failure. Her intentionally-incomplete film communicates the open-endedness aspect of the exhibition to the viewers, continuing to inspire them beyond the virtual exhibition space. “What happens if I, as an artist, leave my work incomplete? Is there a certain beauty to incompleteness? Is there beauty in appreciating the journey, the process of experimenting rather than perfecting the end result?” The artist further states that her process is “unsolvable”. My critique however is that art is always unsolvable and no piece of art is ever “complete” or fully “solved.” There is always room for improvement and endless different directions, sub-directions and possibilities to explore. The result is factual. But I still enjoyed seeing the beauty of this “incomplete” film rather than enduring its failures. The process of curating lies in surrendering to the materials accumulated.

What happens if I, as an artist, leave my work incomplete?

3. Sabrina Zhao (Ruobing, b. 1996), My Unloving Love, 2018. Still. Experimental video. 6min. No dialogue with English subtitles. Video courtesy of the artist.

Fatima Al Kindi’s VIBES is a series of latex paintings on canvases. She dives within herself as a creator and contemplates how she feels about creating when she is in the middle of the process rather than at the far deep-end of the search for meaning. She surrenders to her large canvases and lets the process of creation take over, gambling for the outcomes. Through her lens, the canvas becomes a sea; her painting lets us perceive the contrast between geometric compositions and the free-forming textures. Her process here is in letting go of control and considerations in order to create, and then coming in and starting the process of controlling the curatorial aspects of presentation and exhibition layout.

She surrenders to her large canvases and lets the process of creation take over, gambling for the outcomes.

4. Fatima Al Kindi (b. 1998), Untitled 2, 2020. Latex paint on canvas, 257 x 147cm. From the series VIBES. Image courtesy of the artist.

The sub-theme “Gender, Control and Guilt” is a curation of historic wearable objects that pressurised, controlled and guilt women through beauty standards, fashion trends and cultural expectations. This curated section is a response to Hashel’s sub-theme Control and Guilt. 

VelázquezMaria Teresa (1638-1683) Infanta of Spain is a portrait of a Spanish heir with purposely-styled voluminous hair decorated with butterfly hairpins. This wig portrays the history of women surrendering to the pressures of beauty standards by adding large and heavy hair paddings; rollers and pillows stuffed with sheep’s wool to create hairstyles such as the Pouf. Historically, they believed that this gave them a grandiose appearance despite strained necks and difficulties in regards to mobility. The guilt aspect is born out of women feeling they need to conform to such beauty standards, in turn giving power to societal pressures and ultimately resulting in a form of control. Afterall, hair is potent.

Hair is potent.

5. Velázquez (Diego Rodriguez de Silva y Velázquez), Maria Teresa (1638-1683), Infanta of Spain, 1651-54. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. 

Hyphenated Spaces' multilayeredness proclaims the success of Al Lamki’s practice. The show explores the theme of putting two things together and is a testament to us living through a time of adaptability. “I’m now inspired, how can I express that and what is my medium?” This show itself is embodying flexibility, an unreal realness; a virtual gallery space that feels so real, yet behind a screen inside a device. As we go forward in this new digital paradigm, I foresee the world to be more accepting of visual and conceptual hybridity. “What can I as a viewer, hobbyist or an artist put together to create a bricolage? How can two or more ready-made things be put together to create something new?” Start by gathering quotes, ideas, visuals, sounds, materials or ingredients, surrender to what you have gathered and respond. “My medium speaks for me.”

Hyphenated Spaces in on view virtually at Warehouse421 until March 31st, 2021.
Visit the exhibition here.
For a closer look into the exhibition, visit Warehouse421’s series of Deep Dives.

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the curators digitally realized this exhibition from their respective homes across several continents, never meeting in person. The virtual exhibition is curated by Mingu Cho, Jeffrey Liu, Ju Hee Noh, Christopher Pohndorff, Sherry Wu, and Tonia Zhang.

Hanan Sultan is a jewelry designer based between Muscat, Dubai and London, who has previously participated in student collaborative projects with the British Art Medal Society, Cartier, Louis Vuitton, Swarovski and Vitsœ. Passionate about both fine arts and fashion, she sees jewelry as the perfect middle ground between the two. Her practice is predominantly centered around cultural identity and the human experience of society in relation to this. She graduated with a B.A. in Jewelry Design from Central Saint Martins and is currently pursuing her MA in Jewelry and Metal at the Royal College of Art.

Special thanks: Salwa Mikdadi and Sherry Wu.