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Female artists reimaging Middle East


Mark Hachem Gallery is organizing a “Modern to Contemporary, Female Artists from the Middle East” show on Artsy website, presenting works for women artists from various countries in the region, namely, Helen Khal (1923-2009), Leila Nseir (1941) aside contemporary artists like Mona Trad Dabaji (1950), Zeina Assi (1974), Sara Shamma (1975) and Daisy Abi Jaber (1961). In a press release, Mark Hachem Gallery said art in the Middle East was initially a male-dominated industry, however, reality is transforming rapidly with a growing number of female artists entering it. Notorious as a zone for conflict, war and oppression, the Middle East is also renowned by its rich culture and traditions, which contributed to cultivating women’s talents seeking to influence the situation from within and highlight the injustices through so called activist and engaged art works. The statement also stressed the essential role of women through the provision of an alternative perspective to the once male-restricted industry. Female artists, it noted, have used this adversity as a challenge to be overcome by introducing a provocative and innovative art. They contribute to the evolving cultural scene in the region by utilizing diverse mediums, and tackling personal, as well as local and universal issues. The Gallery statement concluded, saying: “Creating art allows these women to speak and reflect on social issues.” The above exhibition, to remind, will run through November 28. (Al Akhbar, November 17, 2020)

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