Thursday, 19 February 2009


Al Bareh gallery, Bahrein, has a back room available for workshops with artists exhibiting in the gallery. This type of exchange can only give openness and sparkle creativity as an art center.
Transformation of ideas with a personnel impact is one of the essence of creativity. Picasso had said: "copying others is a necessity, copying oneself is disastrous". Where is the line drawn between copying, creating, exchanging, learning, examining, investigating and exploring?
Why do artists keep on repeating themselves in a style that looks like their own and the buyers have indulged in acquisitions? Why is it so difficult to continue the search for a liberation from within? Why comfort of the known takes over the beauty of the quest?

Artists residence around the world are a corner stone for exchange of ideas and work. One of the oldest is the Villa Medici in Rome when in 1803 Napoleon planned for the french artists to have the opportunity to see and copy the masterpieces of antiquity or the renaissance. Politics and history have changed the configuration of the Villa; today, France lost its guardianship over the residence. It has nevertheless allowed generations of artists to soak and impregnate in a world of art and find a bit more about themselves.
In the Arab world, Artists residence has a sense of budding, still in embryo and barely vibrant. Sharjah has set out an artist residence. Khartoum under the supervision of Rashid Diab has a place for artists. But what wbout the environement in which creativity is encouraged, learning is supported and the will to explore motivated?
A back room can be a starting point...

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