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Artists on Omani architecture trail



Twenty internationally acclaimed artists are out on a mission to add a splash of colour to Omani architecture with their live paintings.

The first International Art Forum of Bait Al Zubair Foundation showcases different facets of Omani architecture as seen through the eyes of eminent and celebrated artists. The event started at the Barr Al Jissah Resort on Saturday.

During the course of the next six days – August 12 to 17 – as many as 20 internationally acclaimed artists, including eight from Oman, will  give Omani architecture a fresh insight and perspective.

On the last day (Aug 17), their works will be displayed at the Bait Al Zubair Gallery for public viewing.

Soon after the inauguration of the forum and before the artists got busy with their paints, brushes and palettes, Bait Al Zubair Foundation General Manager Dr Mohammed Al Shahi, said: “This forum is being held with the intent and purpose of bridging cultures and ties among the people of the world and to promote Omani heritage, both locally and abroad.”

“This forum, the first-ever, is a result of the Bait Al Zubair Foundation’s deep commitment towards its corporate cultural responsibility.” “The Foundation’s continued involvement with its diversified initiatives and projects have added value to culture and art.”

Moosa Omar, an Omani pioneer artist who has work jointly with the Bait Al Zubair Gallery, said: “It is the Forum’s goal to provide a platform for the different creative patterns, cultural knowledge and experiences to be shared by everyone.”

He added: “This is also a great opportunity for the world to see the beauty of Oman through these artists’ brilliant artworks.”

The participants of the International Art Forum include Omani pioneers Anwar Sonya, Hussain Obaid, Fakhrataj Al Ismaily, Sami Al Syabi, Mazin Al Mamari, Mohammed Al Farsi, Idrees Al Hooti, and Moosa Omar as well as artists Abdulraheem Salim from the UAE, Nahar Al Marzooq from KSA, Hanadi Al Darwish from Qatar, Abdelwahab Abdul Mohsin from Egypt, Ali Reda from Iraq, Baker Ben Fredj from Tunisia, Ramiz Murad Abbasov from Azerbaijan, Ba Haiden from Germany, Sara Khalafi from Iran, Elena Shapovalova from Russia, Suhaila Al Najadi from Kuwait, and Omar Al Rashid from Bahrain.

For centuries, Omanis have built their homes, villages, and settlements with their hands using local materials and their measurement units were based on the human body.

Doors and windows are important elements in the Sultanate’s architecture for it speaks well of the country’s traditions. As architecture is deeply related to the cultural heritage of any country, it is a very important aspect for this homeland.

The public may witness firsthand how these brilliant artists create their masterpieces from scratch as they do live painting for the whole duration of the event.

The forum will end with the opening of the exhibition featuring all the artworks at Bait Al Zubair on August 17, which will be on display for two weeks.