Amnah Yaqoub displayed her artwork at the Desert Designs Art Gallery from February 12th to the 15th. Her exhibit, which she chose to call "Hidden," was a series of paintings exploring the idea that everyone wears a mask, even from themselves.
|The painting on the right was a crowd favourite.|
|The pages in the painting were actual pages that were glued on to the canvas.|
|A poem she included at her exhibition. You can find it translated into English below.|
One is always molded according to analytic outlooks, and disguises oneself according to behavioral reactions, and one never gives its secret even to its owner, if the owner started to consider itself as a subject. It is not a subject, but it is in its essence a virgin “self.” If probed in its depth, and its privacy violated, and if attempted to be invaded upon with an objective view, it will elude you, and you are left with a range of alternative behavioral deceptions in return, and it will be turned into something else (fake, untrue). No longer a "she."
And there will always be a noticeable difference between what is observed on the outside and what is truly hidden from sight deep down, like the great difference between the physical body and the soul that resides in it. Furthermore, it is impossible for you to reach the soul by skinning the body. At best you will be able to learn more and more about the physical body only, yet will be greatly distanced from the secrets and puzzles of the soul.
Her pieces, all acrylic paint on canvas, ranged in price from SR 1,400 to SR 8,500. At the end of my visit, two paintings were taken away. Sold maybe? I don't know. The artist wasn't actually there herself, which I thought to be rude. I mean, the exhibition was only three days! You have to be willing to commit that much time both to your work and to your audience. Her absence really just turned me off of her work. If she had been there then I could have asked her why some paintings didn't seem to be related to the theme of the exhibit. To me she seemed like an inexperienced or beginning artist, which is OK, even though the poem, if original, was quite deep and thought provoking. I've seen more mature and developed artwork featured at Desert Designs before. Let's see if Abdulwahab Otif's "Memories of Jasmine"'s exhibition, which is showing from the 21st to the 7th, is any better.