An interesting exhibition that plays with the parallels between Japanese and Emirati culture, as both traditional societies move rapidly into a postmodern age. East-East also aims to question what “global art” really means.
East-East has commissioned works by four Emirati artists. Khalid Mezaina and Al Anood Al Obaidly are both recent graduates of the Salama bint Hamdan Emerging Artists Fellowship programme. Also showing are Amna al Maamari and Ahmed al Anzi.
The work on show illustrates the similarities in both cultures’ balance between tradition and modernity, with themes such as mythology (nōh and bedouin), spirituality and repetition, weaving and knotting, Zen Buddhism and the desert’s connection to materiality, traditional and ceremonial dress contrasted to mass-produced consumption typified by plastic materials in chain stores like Daiso.
Above: Khalid Mezaina, Maiden, 2016