Saudi Gazette report / June 14, 2021

Ministry of Culture holds ‘Scripts and Calligraphy: A Timeless Journey’ exhibition

The Ministry of Culture organizes an exhibition showcasing the history of Arabic calligraphy under the title "Scripts and Calligraphy: A Timeless Journey," scheduled to be held from June 16 to Aug. 21, 2021 at the National Museum, Riyadh. The exhibition highlights the stages of the Arabic Script’s development since its very beginnings and the artistic relationship between calligraphy, contemporary art, and artificial intelligence through an exceptional journey of knowledge, featuring Saudi and international master calligraphers, contemporary artists, and designers. The sections and contents of the “Scripts and Calligraphy: A Timeless Journey” exhibition are divided into five stages, namely, the origins of the Arabic script, the development of calligraphy, master calligraphers, calligraphy and contemporary art as well as calligraphy and artificial intelligence.
This section features works by a number of Arab designers from different majors and nationalities, namely: Ebtissam AlGosaibi, Hussein Alazaat, Hamza Al Omari, Khalid Mezaina, Rasha Dakkak, Ranim Al Halaky, Xeina AlMalki, Farah Behbehani, Margherita Abi Hanna, Milia Maroun, Mohammed Khoja, May Aboulfaraj, Nasser Al-Salem, Nadine Kanso, and Noor Saab.
The exhibition is the first of its kind combining classic Arabic calligraphy with artificial intelligence. In this path, artist Michel Paysant presents a new version of his device entitled "Eye Calligraphy Studio — A Constellation of Letters", which is one of the devices capable of exploring the roots of calligraphy and its deep mechanisms.

Aimee Dawson - The Art Newspaper / June 1, 2021

First the Louvre's pyramid, now the actual Pyramids—JR to create show-stopping project in Egypt

The popular French street artist has announced that he will be creating a new work at the Pyramids in Giza, Cairo, in October. "This is not a photomontage... but the art work in October might be a photo collage," reads the Instagram caption under an image of the artist posing nonchalantly (and inconceivably) on the back of a rearing horse.
"I've never been so excited to work on a project, this is an incredible site and I can't wait to come back to the Pyramids for the installation," JR tells The Art Newspaper . The artist is well known for his optical illusion works at famous sites. Most recently he has created a a trompe l’oeil in Paris that makes it look like the Eiffel Tower is teetering on the edge of a deep ravine . In 2016, he took on a different kind of pyramid—the one I.M. Pei designed structure outside the Musée du Louvre—which he made "disappear" .
The commission at the Pyramids is part of the exhibition Forever is Now (21 October 2021-7 November 2021) organised by Art D’Egypte, a company that aims to promote the contemporary Egyptian art scene with annual exhibitions at historic sites. In what is billed as the first event of its kind at the 4,500-year-old Unesco World Heritage Site, it will show works by Egyptian and international artists along a trail around the Giza plateau.
Other confirmed participants in the show include the Italian-American artist Lorenzo Quinn; the Ukrainian artist Alexander Ponomarev; Puerto Rico-born, Los Angeles-based artist Gisela Colon; Egyptian artist Sherin Guirguis; and Saudi Arabian artist Sultan Bin Fahad....

By AFP - Global Times / March 24, 2021

Light in a time of darkness

As the world slowly begins to emerge from the global COVID-19 pandemic, the kingdom of Saudi Arabia seeks to reengage its population with cultural activities. Noor Riyadh - which translates from Arabic to "Light of Riyadh" - is a citywide light and art festival illuminating the Saudi capital of Riyadh for the next three months. Due to the global pandemic, 2020 was hardly characterized by cultural events or communal gatherings. But globally, society has gradually begun to emerge from a state of self-preservation, lockdowns and solitude, and begun a return to normalcy. As the Saudi public re-integrates into post-pandemic society, the Noor Riyadh festival aims to transform urban spaces into art that immerses and engages the community.
The second half of the festival, which takes the theme "Light Upon Light," is a retrospective exhibition tracking light art from the 1960s to the present. It runs until June 12 in the King Abdullah Financial District Conference Center. Saudis are eager to leave the challenges of 2020 behind and look to a "brighter future," according to Director of Riyadh Art Khaled Al-Hazani. The festival, "a celebration of light and art on an unparalleled scale," has already proven popular with Saudis, who have flocked to see the exhibitions on display. Lulwah Al Homoud, one of the Saudi artists exhibiting her work, considers the inaugural festival as the beginning of a "golden age of Saudi art," she says.

Saudi Gazette report / March 21, 2021

‘Light Upon Light’ a groundbreaking lighting extravaganza for Saudi culture

RIYADH — The “Light Upon Light” Exhibition, which is being held at the King Abdullah Financial District as part of the first edition of Noor Riyadh, is the largest group art exhibition that monitors the artistic movement in the lighting arts since 1960s until todate. It includes 30 masterworks of light art divided into four sectional “rays” that survey light as an artistic medium: “Perceiving Light,” “Experiencing Light,” “Projecting Light,” and “Environmental Light.” Each ray blends time and unites established artists of diverse geographic origin. From immersive installation to video and sculpture, visitors to “Light Upon Light” will experience a richly illuminated exhibition in all its spatial and sensory phenomena. This historical presentation of light art is a groundbreaking event for culture in Saudi Arabia. Noor Riyadh, one of the world’s most exciting festivals of light and art combining the highest quality of light artworks across the city, began on March 18 and will run through until April 3. Filled with spectacular installations, the fest will light up the night sky of the capital city of Riyadh. The “Projecting Light,” pavilion presents artworks that use the transmission of light to create the work instead of focusing on light as a medium. In 2019, Saudi artist Sultan Bin Fahd worked on the art piece titled “Once he was a ruler”, which is a collection of photographs, in which ancient sculptures depicting the kings of the ancient Lihyan Kingdom in Northern Arabia are shown, where he modified them by placing layers of X-ray images, and these images were collected, superimposed in illuminated light boxes at the event. Through his abstract drawings, paintings, sculptures and installations, the artist tackled cultural issues related to his homeland in the Kingdom. The artist also re-narrates historical stories and novels using art, and transmits these narratives through contemporary means to reconstruct them with a personal character. While Saudi artist Dana Awartani is participating in the event with her work “Divan Al Majhoul 2021, which combined textiles, hand embroidery and poetry.

CNN Arabic / March 19, 2021

"نور الرياض"..السعودية تشهد انطلاق احتفالية تبرز إبداع فن الضوء

دبي، الإمارات العربية المتحدة (CNN) -- شهدت المملكة العربية السعودية، مساء الخميس، انطلاق احتفالية "نور الرياض" والتي تضمنت عرض أعمال فنية تفاعلية تعتمد على الإضاءة في مواقع متعددة بأنحاء مدينة الرياض
وتضمنت الاحتفالية مشاركة 60 من كبار الفنانين في مجال فنون الإضاءة، ينتمون لأكثر من 20 دولة حول العالم، منهم 23 من الفنانين السعوديين، وفقاً لوكالة الأنباء السعودية "واس"
وتشتمل احتفالية "نور الرياض" على 60 عملاً فنياً، تضم جميع أشكال فنون الضوء، من بينها أعمال تاريخية وهندسية وضوئية، ومنحوتات، وعروض للإضاءة، وعروض تفاعلية، وقطع حركية، وتركيبات وأعمال خارجية، ومجموعة من أشكال الفن الخفيف، يتاح لسكان وزوار مدينة الرياض الاستمتاع بها عن قرب في مختلف أرجاء المدينة، مع تخصيص مركزين رئيسين للاحتفالية في كلٍ من مركز الملك عبدالله المالي ومركز الملك عبدالعزيز التاريخي بالمربع

Abeer Mishkas _ AlSharaq Alawsat عبير مشخص ـ الشرق الاوسط / December 7, 2020

أسبوع «مسك» للفنون... من الرياض إلى العالم وبالعكس

لندن: عبير مشخص

في دورته الرابعة واجه أسبوع «مسك» للفنون جائحة كورونا، واحتمالات مختلفة، منها المضي قدماً أو الإلغاء، لكن «كورونا» لم تستطع تأجيل موعد عشاق الفن والثقافة مع الحدث الفني البارز على روزنامة الفن والثقافة في السعودية. في حوار مع ريم السلطان، الرئيسة التنفيذية لمعهد «مسك» للفنون، عبّرت عن الإصرار والتفاؤل في آن واحد. قالت لـ«الشرق الأوسط» إن الجائحة فرضت على المنظمين صيغة رقمية للوصول للجمهور، لكنها لم تمنع من إقامة بعض الفعاليات على الأرض. تحدثت معنا حول فعاليات الأسبوع، وأيضاً ألقت بنظرها على ما سيقدمه المستقبل. السلطان تتحدث بحماسة جميلة، تتوجها بابتسامة لطيفة لم تفقد تأثيرها عبر شاشة الكومبيوتر، تعود معي لمرحلة الإعداد للأسبوع الفني. تقول: «كنا ننظر بقليل من القلق إلى مدى التفاعل مع الصيغة الافتراضية، لكن التفاعل كان أكثر من جيد، والمشاركات بشكل عام كانت كلها إيجابية». ترى في الموضوع العام الذي يغلف فعاليات الأسبوع، وهو «صياغة الثقافة»، عنصراً جاذباً، فهو «يلمس كل الفئات، ولهذا كانت هناك مشاركات وقبول من أطراف مختلفة». تشير إلى المشاركين في الفعاليات: «شارك معنا أكثر من 65 مختصاً وخبيراً في الفنون والثقافة، تقريباً من أكثر من 10 دول»، ترى أن الموضوع (صياغة الثقافة) وأهميته وتوقيته كانت عناصر جذب للمشاركين.

Muhammad Yusuf, Features Writer_ Gulf Today / October 25, 2020

Misk Art Institute launches Imprint exhibition of Saudi and Gulf art

Misk Art Institute (MAI), under the auspices of the Misk Foundation established by Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, has launched Imprint, a photography, film and digital exhibition (Oct. 4, 2020 — Jan. 28, 2021).
Curated by Latifa Abdul Rahman Al Khalifa and featuring the works of 17 Saudi and Gulf artists, the show is being held at Prince Faisal bin Fahd Fine Arts Gallery (or Masaha, meaning ‘space’ in Arabic), established in 1985 in Riyadh as a governmental hall dedicated to fine arts. It was renovated by MAI and reopened in 2019.

Photography and Digital Exhibition

The concept of identity is complex and layered, especially when attributed to the Arabian Peninsula and its Gulf. The people who live in the Gulf Cooperative Council (GCC) countries are the descendants of ages of civilizations whose footprints and maritime trade merged to a variety of languages, religions and ideologies.
The core of this exhibition Imprint is to invite artists based in Saudi Arabia and its neighboring GCC countries to explore their definition of identity in the form of photography, film and digital artworks. The image is a vessel that interprets both space and time, as well as encapsulating moments that are an extension of oneself. As producers and consumers of their image, participating artists can shift the gaze from the politics, oil-wealth and religion attributed to the Gulf, and instead offer new and personal narratives.

العلا (السعودية): عبير مشخص / February 5, 2020

من كاليفورنيا إلى صحراء العلا... الفن المعاصر في حوار مع الطبيعة

في الصحراء نتواضع ونشعر بحجمنا الحقيقي في هذا الكون، يراودني الشعور أثناء رحلة نحو العلا السعودية لمعاينة معرض فني ضخم بعنوان «ديزيرت إكس». ويمثل معرض «ديزرت إكس العلا» أول تعاون دولي لـ«ديزرت إكس» الذي يقام في «كونشيلا فالي» بكاليفورنيا الأميركية وتأسس لربط المجتمعات والثقافات الصحراوية من خلال الفن المعاصر. وينظم المعرض بالتعاون مع المخرج الفني في «ديزيرت إكس» نيفيل ويكفيلد والقيّمتين والمختصتين في الفن المعاصر من المملكة رنيم فارسي وآية علي رضا.
الحافلة التي تقلنا نحو العلا محملة بجمع كثيف ومتنوع الجنسيات واللغات، كل فرد في انتظار المفاجأة المعدة لنا، وعدنا بمعر ض فني كبير وعرفنا بعض الأسماء المشاركة، وها نحن نقترب من ذلك العرض، نشغل الوقت بالأحاديث الجانبية وبالنظر من نوافذ الحافلة لتصافح أعيننا التشكيلات الصخرية الشهيرة في العلا... ولكن لنا حديث آخر مع تلك الإبداعات الصخرية، نحن الآن في الموقع حيث تبدأ عناصر المفاجأة في الظهور شيئاً فشيئاً... على مسافات تكاد تكون متساوية نرى تشكيلات فنية بعضها مكون من قطعة واحدة فقط، وبعضها الآخر من أكثر من قطعة، كل منها يبدو متواضعاً في ظلال الجبال الصخرية، لن يبزها جلالا ولكن يكتفي بأن يكون وجوده هنا نوعاً من الحوار البصري، بين الإنسان والطبيعة، بين ما شكلته الرياح والمياه على مدى قرون لا تعد من أخاديد وأحافير وفجوات في الصخور الممتدة على مدى البصر، وبين ما شكلته يد إنسانية تقدم التساؤلات والتأملات في الحياة ومعانيها.

جدة: عائشة جعفري _ aawsat / February 3, 2020

14 فناناً يبحرون في حضارة العلا عبر «ديزرت إكس»

وينظّم معرض «ديزرت إكس» العلا للمرة الأولى بالتعاون مع المخرج الفني نيفيل ويكفيلد والمختصتين في الفن المعاصر رنيم فارسي وآية علي رضا من السعودية، ويعرض 14 عملا لفنانين محليين وعالميين مصممة لتحاكي طبيعة العلا. وقدّم الفنان راشد الشعشعي عمله «ممر مختصر» الذي يصور فيه إبل وخيول الرحالة وقوافل التجارة التي كانت تجد من مغارات وشعاب العلا الفريدة ملجأ من اللصوص وقطاع الطرق ويستمدون من عيونها ماء ما ساعد في تنامي حضارات العلا عبر العصور وصنع منها محطة لحضارات متعاقبة. بينما يعرض الفنان مهند شونو في عمله «المسار المفقود» فكرة البحث عن معنى للحياة عن طريق المسارات والخرائط التي يتبعها الإنسان. وذكر شونو أن خرائط الكنز غالباً ما تؤدي إلى صناديق فارغة ويؤكد أن الرحلة بحق أكثر أهمية من الوجهة. وتابع: «هذا العمل يعطينا اتجاها نحو مساراتنا الشخصية المدفونة، إذ ينمو المسار المستمد من سطر واحد ليصبح تحفة نحتية تنتظر الزوار لاكتشافها».

عائشة جعفري_ aawast / November 20, 2019

في خضم كل ما يجري... معرض سعودي يرصد التغيير

يرصد 22 شاباً سعودياً عبر أعمال فنية التغيرات التي يمر بها المجتمع وتداعياتها على المستويين الفردي والجماعي، وذلك في معرض بمدينة جدة يحمل اسم «في خضم كل ما يجري» يجمع مختلف المدارس الفنية كما يقدم «أثر غاليري» الذي ينظم المعرض أعمالاً فنية لـ110 فنانين سعوديين ومقيمين في المملكة، بعضهم اشتهروا عالمياً وتم اقتناء أعمالهم من متاحف ولهم مشاركات فنية في نسخ بینالي وقال محمد حافظ مدير صالة «أثر غاليري» لـ«الشرق الأوسط»: «وجهت أثر هذا العام دعوة واسعة لاستقطاب أفضل المواهب الشابة للمشاركة في نسخة المعرض السابعة، وتلقى على إثرها 203 طلبات من جميع أنحاء السعودية، وتم اختيار 22 منها عبر لجنة مختصة»
وأضاف حافظ أن تسمية المعرض «في خضم كل ما يجري» جاء من كونه سؤالاً شائعاً بين الشباب، وتحديداً فيما تشهده البلاد من نهضة فنية من خلال تجربتها الأولى في إضفاء الطابع المؤسسي على الفن والثقافة والترفيه، لتندرج هذه الفعاليات ضمن الإنجازات الثقافية، وأعاد هذا الأمر تعريف المشهد السعودي وكيفية تفاعل الناس معه، ويمثل هذا تغيراً على المستويات الاجتماعية والثقافية والاقتصادية والتأثيرات الحاصلة على صعيد الأماكن العامة والخاصة، وهنا مساحة للتعبير عن كيفية إدراك الفنان حجم هذه التغيرات

Daniele Perra_ Artribune / July 14, 2019

Reportage dall’Arabia Saudita: il regno che verrà (Report from Saudi Arabia: the kingdom to come)

It is in Riyadh that the artist  Sultan bin Fahad  (Riyad, 1971) - a member of the royal family and one of the most active and enthusiastic promoters and initiators of the change - installed a monumental exhibition divided into seven chapters, curated by Reem Fadda, in the evocative spaces and  délabré  of the Red Palace. Center of power and magnificence, the Palace, completed in 1944 - the first building in the capital to be built with concrete and iron-steel - was the residence of the then Prince Saud bin Abdulaziz, later the office of the Saudi Ministers Council and until 1987 the Palace of complaints. It has been closed and abandoned for twenty years and after the exhibition it will be converted into a hotel.
The artist has long been fascinated by the palace and his exhibition, through installations, videos and photographs, talks about the events that took place there - from the power meetings behind the scenes to the work of the many attendants who worked there - over the years and the history of the country. Family history.  "On the evening of the opening to the public,  " he says, "  I met a lady in her nineties who told me that she lived in the Palace. Walking with his grandchildren he recognized the various rooms. He began to cry, seized by nostalgia and the many memories of his days spent in the Palace ”

Ayesha Sohail Shehmir Shaikh / June 19, 2019

WEHE Collective Design Exhibition Launches At Jeddah-based Athr Gallery Until July

A reflection on heritage, the WEHE Collective Design exhibition in Jeddah’s Athr Gallery highlights the duality of the past and present

Curated by Montreal-born architect Nicolas Bellavance-Lecompte in collaboration with Fonderia Artistica Battaglia and Carwan Gallery, the  WEHE Collective Design  exhibition launched in  Athr Gallery , Jeddah on 18 May 2019, has brought together various renowned architects, designers and artists specialising in Middle Eastern design, including Omar Chakil, Karen Chekerdijian, Ghaith&Jad, Rasha Nawam, Mary-Lynn Massoud, Carlo Massoud and Anastasia Nysten. Aptly named, the word Wehe stems from the ancient  Egyptian  word meaning ‘dwelling place’.
Inspired by sociological and anthropological observations of the urban oasis of Siwa in Egypt, the exhibition explores the relationship between primordiality and the geographical context of the Middle Eastern  desert . “I am always fascinated by how local Berber populations managed to adapt tradition with modern lifestyle,” says curator Bellavance-Lecompte. The inspiration behind the exhibition was, as Bellavance-Lecompte says,  “to redefine an identity in relation with the region and somehow with materials and techniques that are indigenous. At the same time, I wanted to push the boundaries of their use so we’re able to revisit our perception of these objects.”

Rawaa Talass_ Arab News / May 22, 2019

Zahrah Al-Ghamdi finds the beauty in sadness

This month saw perhaps the most significant accomplishment of Al-Ghamdi’s career to date. The artist was chosen to inaugurate Saudi Arabia’s pavilion at the 2019 edition of the Venice Biennale —the art world’s largest public event and oldest contemporary art show — through an immersive solo exhibition entitled “After Illusion.”
Al-Ghamdi was jointly selected to represent the Kingdom by the recently developed Saudi Ministry of Culture and the Misk Art Institute, a homegrown arts foundation that aims to strengthen artistic activity within the Kingdom.  “To be honest, when I used to read about the Venice Biennale and its unique concept, I felt so far away from that world — it was like a dream,” Al Ghamdi tells Arab News. “In recent years, I’ve worked really hard and always hoped to achieve more through each work I would present. So when I received the call from the Misk Art Institute to participate at the biennale, it was like a dream I never thought I’d dream. I was elated but simultaneously felt a great deal of responsibility, as I am not representing (just) myself, but my country and all its artists.”  
Through her debut participation at the biennale, which is open to the public until November 24, Al-Ghamdi joins a canon of female artists putting on solo exhibitions and taking the lead in representing their countries to the world, including Larissa Sansour for Denmark, Laure Prouvost for France, Cathy Wilkes for Great Britain, Nujoom Al-Ghanem for the UAE and Naiza Khan for Pakistan.

Mark Westall / March 19, 2019

SHUBBAK: A window on contemporary Arab culture

Visual arts For 2019 Shubbak has commissioned a number of mobile installations for different locations across London. Aicha El Beloui is a Casablanca-based illustrator, graphic designer, and creative director who regularly works with communities to discover a neighbourhood and to filter her observations into maps and illustrations. The history and psychogeography of Moroccan immigration in London will be the focus of her work for Shubbak; drawing from the material gathered in North Kensington and the British Library’s archives, El Beloui will create one of her distinctive maps, which will be available in paper formats, digitally and as an installation, travelling to different sites across the city. In partnership with the Bagri Foundation.
Bricklab, the designers of the first Saudi pavilion at Venice Architecture Biennale create a new pop-up sculpture especially for Shubbak. 22 brightly coloured units equalling in number the 22 states of the Arab League are arranged in different constellations to offer new viewpoints of geographies, nations and the power to imagine other realities. No unit can stand on its own, but has to be grafted onto others. Geographical Child’s Play conjures up poignant and surprising alignments and dependencies. Established in Jeddah in 2015 Bricklab quickly established itself as one of the most dynamic current design practices in Saudi Arabia.
Shubbak  is the UK’s premier festival of contemporary Arab culture, presenting outstanding Arab artists to audiences in London and across England. Shubbak’s programme includes UK premieres and new commissions from over 150 artists based in the Arab region, in Europe and in the UK, with both cutting-edge and celebrated names, through a mix of visual arts, film, music, theatre, dance, literature and debates. Led by Eckhard Thiemann, artistic director, and Daniel Gorman, executive director, Shubbak 2019 is the 5th edition of this biennial festival. Shubbak 2019 principal partners are Arts Council England, A. M. Qattan Foundation, Bagri Foundation and British Council. Shubbak is a registered charity number 1150374.

Melissa Gronlund / May 18, 2018

Meet the Saudi architects making their debut at the Venice architecture biennale

Saudi Arabia is participating in the Venice architecture biennale for the first time, in a pavilion commissioned by the Misk Art Institute, the foundation set up by Crown Prince Moham­med bin Salman and run by Ahmed Mater.
The pavilion is made up of six spaces designed by the young Jeddah-based architects Abdulrahman and Turki Gazzaz, brothers who collaborate as the studio Bricklab. They present “an introduction to the major urban centres in Saudi Arabia and how the oil boom has affected their growth”, says Abdulrahman Gazzaz, the elder of the two. “Jeddah, as the port city, with its long history as the gateway to the holy cities; Makkah, as the religious capital; Riyadh, as the government capital; and Damman, as the centre of the oil industry.”
Right now, he continues, “a lot of changes are happening. We have this space in between what it was and what it is and what is becoming. It’s a fascinating point in the history of Saudi Arabia.”
'In Saudi, there is a stronger sense of community'
The title for the pavilion,  Spaces in Between , looks not only at changes to the kingdom, but also at the fact that Saudi cities are a patchwork of spaces. Because urbanisation in Saudi Arabia was spurred on by the oil boom, its cities are characterised by sprawl, built with cars in mind rather than the slow pace of foot traffic.
“The combination of sand and resin reflects two primordial conditions of Saudi Arabia as a nation: its oil economy and its desert landscape,” Turki explains. “Even though there’s a lot of diversity around the kingdom in terms of natural environments and climates, the desert comes to the foreground when one recalls the Gulf or Saudi Arabia in particular.”

Jyoti Kalsi / September 13, 2017

Cultural connection: An exhibition examines the parallels between spiritual and urban cultures in Saudi Arabia and Utah

The exhibition, curated by Jared Steffensen of UMOCA, features works by established and emerging Saudi artists such as Abdullah AlOthman, Abdulnasser Gharem, Ahmed Mater, Arwa Alneami, Nugamshi, Dana Awartani, Ghada Al Rabea, Khalid Bin Afif, Khalid Zahid, Lina Gazzaz, Moath Alofi, Musaed Al Hulis, Nasser Al Salem, Nouf Alhimiary, Qamar Abdulmalik, Rashed Al Shashai, Telfaz11, Yusef Alahmad and Balqis AlRashed, who is the first international artist to do a residency at UMOCA.
“This exhibition examines the parallels between spiritual and urban cultures in Saudi Arabia and Utah, especially the symbolism of creativity that connects cities of pilgrimage in both places. Since the 7th Century, the holy cities of Makkah and Medina have drawn millions of Muslim pilgrims every year to worship at the holiest sites in Islam. Salt Lake City was established nearly a thousand years later by Mormon pioneers in search of a safe haven for their newly established religion. Members of the Church of Latter Day Saints also make a twice-annual pilgrimage of the faithful to the General Conference at Temple Square — the spiritual centre of the Mormon faith,” Steffensen says.

“The artists featured in this show are engaged in looking at the struggles and transformations of their society and delving into complex issues that link Utah and Saudi Arabia, such as oil, pilgrimage and tension surrounding commercial development around important cultural and religious heritage sites.