The Young and the Creative

Umbrella on Paradise Beach

Andrew Weaver’s Umbrella on Paradise Beach from Between Two Seas

Bahrain may be known for its two-seas – the salty Gulf and the ancient, sweet water; but since I have lived here, I have noticed a third current.  It is an under-current of organic creativity.

Today Bahrain’s “art scene”, officially sponsored since 1983, has been outflanked by Art Dubai.  Eight years ago, this now, annual event was created as one more attraction to draw international tourists.  The organizers have successfully secured the international acclaim they sought.

Still, on this tiny island, I feel a growing wave of creativity.  I sense it is the children of the first generation that went to the West to be educated.  The “second” generation also studied abroad, but not as engineers or doctors.  Uninterested in corporate jobs, they have chosen to follow the heart and to become musicians, photographers, designers, or artists.

Recently, I chatted with Ramah al Husseini and Yasmin Sharabi, two women who have returned home, and who are helping to grow the local art scene.

2013-05-08 11.28.28

Yasmin Sharabi is the curator at the Waterline Gallery.  Like many Bahraini landmarks, it was “previously known as” the Atrium Gallery in the Bahrain Financial Harbor.  Potentially a way to draw visitors into the Financial Harbor’s echoing halls, the gallery‘s brand is undergoing a face-life as it seeks to find its place within the larger, international art scene.

At the Waterline, the RE Exhibit continues.  RE features four artists who recycled materials to relay their observations of human excess while providing a glimmer of hope and innovation.

Last week, I met young artist and gallery operator, Ramah al Husseini who presented her portfolio to a group of art lovers.

yellow house in budaiya

Returning to Bahrain after university in Canada, she decided to open a private gallery that houses an exhibition hall and an art studio.  Located in a twenty-year old, renovated house in Budaiya, like the Waterline Gallery, Anamil 296 is a brand in-progress.  Still, Ramah announced her third exhibit would open this week.

If the waves of creativity continue to wash across this island, I think the fires of despair will be extinguished.

ABOUT ANAMIL 296, JUNE 5TH EXHIBIT
June 5 2013 exhibit opening at Anamil 296 in Bahrain
ABOUT THE WATERLINE GALLERY and RE EXHIBIT

The Waterline Art Gallery, 3rd Floor Atrium, Harbour Mall, Bahrain Financial Harbour.

There is a new entrance into the Financial Harbour at Bab Al Bahrain/Manama City Center.  The Financial Harbour road leads straight to the building, but you will completely circle the Harbor Tower to end up back at the side facing Bab Al Bahrain where the Visitor Parking entrance is located.

After taking the elevator to the third floor, follow the signs to pointing left through the dark offices to enter the gallery.

A Conversation with Loraine Todd on Hooks, Books and Feathers

Loraine Todd RE

Artist Loraine Todd will host an informal discussion at the Waterline Gallery Thursday, May 9th at 6:30pm.  She will chat about her inspiration for her pieces included in the RE exhibit .

My relationship with Loraine began over clay.  You might have met her behind a camera, dressing a mannequin or digging through salvage yards.  You see, Loraine’s creativity is only constrained by her day job.  It seems she has her fingers in a bit of everything.

Her eye has a way of taking what already is and reflecting it back into the world through a different lens.  For Thursday evening, she has chosen a few excerpts from John Berger’s Ways of Seeing to help explain how she came to view Art.

Come to the Waterline Gallery Thursday evening for a chat.  You may leave with a changed perspective about …. everything.

bird in the hand is worth two in the bush loraine todd

ABOUT ARTIST, LORAINE TODD

Originally from Glasgow, Scotland, Loraine has traveled extensively and lived in numerous countries worldwide. Loraine studied photography at Auckland University.  She then went on to study textiles and ceramics as well as Art Therapy at Goldsmiths University, London, UK. She has taken part in exhibitions as both a curator and/or an artist as well as set/ prop design for various theatrical productions.

ABOUT JOHN BERGER’S WAYS OF SEEING

“John Berger’s Ways of Seeing is one of the most stimulating and influential books on art in any language. First published in 1972, it was based on the BBC television series about which the (London) Sunday Times critic commented: “This is an eye-opener in more ways than one: by concentrating on how we look at paintings… he will almost certainly change the way you look at pictures.” By now he has.” – Penguin Books

“Controversial at the time – its focus on the tacit ideologies of Old Masters and led one critic to liken it to “Mao’s Little Red Book for a generation of art students” – it’s now regarded not only as a landmark work of British arts broadcasting, but as a key moment in the democratisation of art education. Its 40th anniversary has been marked at a series of public talks and at a major Berger conference at King’s College London.” – Guardian

GETTING TO THE WATERLINE GALLERY

3rd Floor of the Harbour Mall, Bahrain Financial Harbour.  To enter Visitor Parking, follow the road as it circles ALL the buildings back around to the front.  Keep asking security for directions.

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