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LAST CHANCE Ismail Shammout and Tamam El-Akhal: Lasting Impressions
15 December 2018Free
Each year Sharjah Art Museum hosts an artist from the Middle East; this year it’s the husband and wife partnership of Ismail Shammout and Tamam El-Akhal. With more than 70 original works by Shammout and El-Akhal from different periods, this exhibition aims to reflect the main stages in the artistic careers of both artists and allows a deep and emotional view in the tragedy, hope and pride of the Palestinian people.
Shammout was born on 1930 in Lydda, Palestine, and at the age of 18 was among the thousands of Palestinians who were forced out of their homes by Jewish forces in order to create the state of Israel. This dramatic experience was reflected in many of his paintings and has influenced his entire career; long recognised as one of Palestine’s leading modernist painters, he employs familiar symbols of Palestinian traditions and culture to construct a visual narrative of Palestinian nationalism. Tamam El-Akhal also experienced the tragedy of expulsion from her home in Jaffa during the Nakba in May 1948; she too became a leading figure in the Palestinian arts scene and was instrumental in the development of Shammout’s career. Both artists contributed by that decisively to the artistic visual preservation of the Palestinian tragedy and history and together significantly marked the modern collective memory and cultural heritage of Palestine.