Art & PhotographyThe Arts

Syrian Artist Safwan Dahoul’s First Solo Exhibition in Dubai

Many people are pervaded with the confusing essence of the mixture of dream and reality. One Syrian artist has managed to capture his dreams and mingle it with the reality of his own person. Safwan Dahoul is one of the foremost painters in the Arab world, and he has repeatedly proven his talent. His latest ongoing Dream series, Still Dreaming, is highlighted in his solo exhibition in Ayyam Gallery Dubai that opened up on March 14, 2016.

Born in 1961 in Hama, Syria,  Dahoul’s work is regarded as a crucial link between modern and contemporary Arab art. For nearly three decades, this influential artist has been telling a story of one prominent figure and her journey. The truth behind her journey is always left in mystery, as he is very vague with answering questions. Could she possibly represent his mother country, Syria?

Since the late 1980s, his Dream series have explored the physical and psychological effects of alienation, solitude, and longing. In a press release by the Ayyam Gallery, it is explained that “Dahoul uses the formal properties of painting to recreate the subconscious sense of enclosure that appears during times of crisis, whether mourning, estrangement, or political conflict”. His female protagonist is depicted to embody all of these events, in various canvas’s.

Over the past few years, Dahoul has participated in: solo and group exhibitions at Samsung Blue Square and Busan Museum of Art, South Korea (2014); Ayyam Gallery DIFC, Dubai (2014, 2011); Ayyam Gallery Beirut (2014); Ayyam Gallery London (2013); Edge of Arabia, London (2013); and Institut du Monde Arabe, Paris (2012).

His Still Dreaming exhibition is ongoing till May 30, 2016, so if you just happen to be in Dubai hurry up and check out the rest of the series!

As always, don’t forget to leave a smile 🙂 !


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Israa Elkhatib

I was born in Palestine but raised with the fireflies in Georgia. My teenage years were spent being the Muslim nerd who was known as the bookworm of the school. That followed me back to Palestine, to develop into being the girl with the big vocabulary. I spent most of my high-school days cursing Newton for not eating that apple. My English Literature Bachelor's degree was only obtained because I'm a nerd for literature and my minor in Translation pretty much pays the bills, thank you Birzeit University.Creative writing is my passion and reading is my escape from reality into a world where everything is the way you imagine it to be.

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