A new exhibition from one of Qatar’s best-known artists is coming to the Qatar Museums Gallery in Katara from Tuesday 11th November. As a pioneer of Qatar’s modern art movement, Yousef Ahmad’s artistic journey has spanned more than three decades and his work has been influenced by his surroundings and emotional ties with Qatar’s culture and traditions.
Yousef Ahmad: Story of ingenuity exhibition highlights the Qatari artist’s body of work through a selection of his most striking artworks from his early career in the 1970s until today. It showcases three phases in Yousef Ahmad’s artistic development, from the early oil paintings that include the historic depiction of Al Zubarah Fort, to his mixed media calligraphic pieces and then through to his new conceptual artworks presenting his ability in developing an innovative artistic style.
Yousef Ahmad’s exhibition marks the highpoint of Qatari artistic talent included in a number of dynamic and exciting exhibitions that have opened in venues across Doha. These include exhibitions and events at Mathaf: Arab Museum of Modern Art and the Museum of Islamic Art in an ongoing celebration of art, creativity and heritage.
Yousef Ahmad is renowned for his distinct and flexible style and his mastery of different media – from charcoal to calligraphy and oil painting earlier in his career. Thousands of visitors to Katara will now have the opportunity to see artworks that have been exhibited around the world including the United States, Europe, and the Middle East. His vibrant and distinctive style has helped him build a strong critical following and support in Qatar – including the patronage of H. E. Sheikh Hassan bin Mohamed bin Ali al-Thani – as well as the wider Middle East and internationally.
His strong affection for Qatar is evident both in the inspiration he draws from the country in his work but also the media and materials he uses. His work celebrates the gentle quietness of Qatar’s sea, the flat expanses of its desert and the serene openness of the sky. His connection is strengthened by his use of materials including local palm trees from which he produces handmade paper and in using desert pigments from the ground and earth of Qatar to create earthy and rustic effects.
Describing the exhibition, Yousef Ahmad said: “As a local artist who has had the privilege to train abroad, I find so much in our environment that excites and inspires me. What’s more, the opportunity to share my works with the people of Qatar is inspiring and humbling, and I hope that my journey encourages future generations of local artists to follow their creative dreams. I’m proud to play an important part in the development of our country’s artistic community and I look forward to seeing it evolve and develop at this incredibly important time.”
Hamad Al Eida, Director of Communications for Qatar Museums said: “The future of our arts, heritage and museum professionals is shaped and influenced by the progress and contribution of our country’s existing artistic and creative talent. We’re therefore incredibly fortunate and owe a debt of gratitude to Yousef Ahmad as one of our country’s most significant figures and we’re excited to be able to present his artwork in this way. This exhibition should be enjoyed by the widest possible audiences alongside the other events and exhibitions in Doha during November and, under the visionary guidance of our Chairperson, HE Shaikha Al Mayassa bint Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, we hope it will help to foster a spirit of national participation in art, creativity and heritage.”
Yousef Ahmad: Story of ingenuity is located at the QM Gallery, Building 10, Katara and will be on display from Tuesday 11th November 2014 until Saturday 14th February 2015.