Monday, 1 June 2009

Tareq al Kandari

Sans STYLE: An archetype is a generic idealized model of an object or basic element from which similar instances are derived, copied, patterned, oremulated. The basic elements in this case are wall, floor, column, and a very special cube…” 26 may 2009
Tareq al Kandari, architect, presented a complex intricate visual installation on a research about the begining and evolution of a symbol in the region: the Kaaba. He starts with the simple idea of the cube and its historical progression in architecture, he worked on giving a sense of space at the core of the black cube, He used several medias for his presentation: paintings, video, marks on the floor, built plexi and wood representation of the space and the movement around the Kabaa. The most striking painting was the white cube in a black background. He maneuvered in the Sultan Gallery in Kuwait as experimentally as possible.
Nothing was for sale, nothing to buy, quite a refreshing attitude to arts nowadays. Just a will to share an idea, pull it through, research thoroughly and present it in his own vision.
Although quite different, this historical research was of a scholarly value similar to a lecture given in April 09 by Dr Juan Antonio Souto, at Dar al athar al islamiyah on another theme: the mosque of Cordova in Spain and the influence of history and impact of the Umayads on the building itself.
Souto showed slides in a traditional manner, whereas al Kandari had an interactive challenging understanding of the Kaaba. What will be his next theme?

(photos by Tareq)


AliK said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
AliK said...

I enjoyed the experience: tareq's work managed to transport us to Mecca, and our senses were able to capture the actual volume, perspective of Kaaba,and best of all, the circulating masses around it.

William Andersen said...

wow, I am really sorry that I missed this! at least from your description and the photos you provide, it seemed really great!

I wish that the Sultan Gallery's flyers for the exhibit would have been more inviting and descriptive, perhaps with the photos you posted... they just had a lot of black & white text on two gray squares and did not even mention anything about the Kaaba (which is odd since that seems the whole focus of the exhibit)!

Really too bad since there is so few opportunities to see good art in Kuwait

ghadah alkandari said...

In reply to Mr. Andersen's comment on the invites: I am Tareq's sister and one of the few people who knew what the subject matter was. He purposely left out the Kaaba in his invitation because he wanted people to go in with no preconceptions. To tell you the truth, I wish I didn't know about it. I would have enjoyed the impact of discovering what the 'special cube' was. I think announcing that it was the Kaaba would have given away the punchline and taken away from the mystery.

William Andersen said...

In reply to Ms. Alkandari's comments, I do think keeping the Kaaba connection somewhat obscured might make a lot sense. I really do enjoy a mystery and often too specific a reference in a work of art can limit its multiple meanings. However, more what I was commenting on was the lack of enticement in the flyer for the exhibit.

I have been too disappointed by many exhibits, the Sultan Gallery is really far away, and most of us have schedules that are too busy, so when I see a flyer that does not have much promise of anything interesting, I unfortunately might skip the exhibit. Like I said in my previous post, the flyer just had two gray boxes and a lot of very small text. I see far too much text in my job already and the thought of going to an exhibit that was just a bunch of text on banal gray backgrounds did not seem visually interesting at all to me!

From the flyer, this is what one would expect to see. But Sarah's photos show that the installation itself looked much more interesting! Sorry that I missed it!

Also, at least as an outsider to Islam but yet someone fascinated with religion, the mention of the Kaaba might have made it seem more intriguing for me specifically, and I would have gone...