LEFT TO RIGHT: Johnatan Machado, Sarah Jayyousi, Amna Al Muftah and Hemanth Madupu.
Artists-in-residence at Doha Fire Station recently showcased their works in ‘open studios’ ranging from music, traditional weavings, painting and sculpture covering themes on the environment, culture and life. self-expression.
Seventeen artists are taking part in this year’s edition. This is an annual nine-month residency program from September to June, where artists are given studio space on one of the five floors of the fire station building.
Included for the sixth edition of the Artists in Residence program or AIR 6 are Shaikha Al Khulaifi, Noor Al Kuwari, Wadha Al Mesalam, Amna Al Muftah), Ali Al Naama, Farah Al Sidiky, Maha Al Sulaiti, Abdulrahman Al Thani (all from Qatar ) Hemanth Madupu (India), Noof Al Theyab (Qatar), Fatima Al Yousef (Qatar), Sarah Jayyousi (Palestine), Hazim Mohamed (Sudan), Johnatan Machado (Venezuela), Abir Zakzok (Syria) and Voyyyd (Qatar).
Also participating are artists Ruwad Wafika Sultan Al Essa (Qatar) and Hassan Al Mulla (Qatar).
Peninsula talked to some of these artists where they talked about their arts.
Hemanth Madupu explained that his current project is about Khaliji music interactive art. Madupu, along with his partner Abdulrahman Al Thani, generated waves through the rhythm of music and by scanning their works through a mobile app, he will play Khaliji music. Both are interdisciplinary artists and musicians.
Fatima Al Yousef’s works feature a creature as a subject. “I use art as a form of expression, every creature you see is based on a person I know or an emotion, everything makes sense to me, even the shapes.”
Each of her works of art has a code that also has a meaning that she does not want to reveal. She experiments with different mediums such as cardboard, embroidery, animation, among others.
Johnatan Machado from Venezuela said, “My idea of the work is about traditional materials that are transformed into contemporary works of art.” Machado has been an artist for 20 years, but work on traditional Qatari weavings and tapestries began six years ago.
Sheikha Al Khulaifi, a multidisciplinary artist has various art forms on media illustration, portraiture, creative writing (poetry), and now she makes her own paper.
She revealed that many of her artworks are about being autistic, being one herself, and that “what it feels like on the outside looking inside, I’m half American and half Qatari, so I’ve always been between two places.
Amna Al Muftah’s works focus on nature. “I collect a lot of native plants around me, usually from the desert; I dry them, make compositions and paint them. I want to draw attention to the pollution that I see around, because the plants that I collect, most of them contain waste, and people don’t notice it because they don’t see it . His latest painting is called “Plant Landfill” where plants are filled with trash on a 121 x 182 canvas.
Sarah Jayyousi’s art is about abstract geometric exploration where she draws inspiration from architecture and paints it on canvas by “flattening images”.
“My art is my voice because I’m very reserved and calm, and my work is very bright and it shows people my confidence. I also want them to appreciate their surroundings, and my art speaks to that,” Jayyousi explained. Open Studios take place twice a year at the fire station, which is a great opportunity to meet artists in residence, curators and see their work and ongoing projects.