Talent does not have an address. It resides anywhere and everywhere without having any crave for being spotted or recognised. Seven women from Salalah proved this at an exhibition of their paintings organised by the Salalah chapter of the Omani Society for Fina Arts (OSFA).
The event, titled ‘Imagination Spirit’, was organised under the auspices of Salim Ofait Abdullah al Shanfari, Head of Dhofar Municipality.
The event truly reflected the imagination spirit of all the seven women, whose paintings were on display at the exhibition, but it was equally difficult to walk into their minds. The subjects were so diverse and sometimes so fine, that it was not easy for a common visitor to understand what really made the painters paint such beautiful works.
They were quite eager to explain about their paintings and the basic reasons behind their work.
Mayada Reehan, for example, loves to work on old ladies because she does not have a grandmother. She is a portrait lover and loves to experiment with new materials and ideas. Nature is her favourite subject and her flirtation with colours and forms are quite visible in her works.
Similar is the case with Maryam Mohammed al Amri. She wants to do something different with new style and new material. She, however, is equally particular about projecting Oman’s old culture in her art works. Among her three paintings on display, one was about Arabic letters while the other two were about Omani forts.
Proud of Omani heritage and culture, Maryam wants her paintings to be seen by the future generation to let them understand the old cultural values of Oman.
Maria Dekeersmaeker, a journalist and writer from Netherlands, was quite impressed with the exhibition and termed this to be a “walk through the minds of seven women.”
She writes extensively on social issues, including those related to women and has made elaborate comments about the exhibition on womanmatters.wordpress blog.
Commenting on the works of Nada Kuleeb, whose paintings were on display at the exhibition, Maria says: “Nadia is fond of red and brown colours and her work ‘The Prayer’ has it all. She painted a curly haired woman who is praying. Her inspiration comes from an Egyptian movie where a man who fell in love with a woman before marriage was killed by the family. The work is full of darkness, but also full of hope in the way in which the woman reaches out to the light.”
“Amal Bassaad’s’ beloved work in the exhibition is very photogenic, realistic impression of the Muttrah Souq in Muscat. Although she also paints abstracts, mostly on demand, she likes to paint very realistic and figurative themes. Very simply framed in the main colour of the painting, the souq somewhere, somehow becomes alive poetical,” says Maria.
Similarly, according to Maria, “Yusra Muqaibal captures something with the old decorative doors, typical for Oman and Salalah. The way the doors are taken out of their frames and solitarily put in a moving wavy environment shows their total beauty.”
And “Asma Kulaib tells traditional stories about traditional ways of medicine for example, where the treatment of the sick is a combination of figurative art with non-figurative elements. To express movement she uses several materials and she lets parts of her work jump out of the frame.”
Aman Alfaigh Alhamri’ likes to share how she experience situations in which people are busy with their work. Through her colours and a mix of abstract forms she succeeds in bringing out the proud of that people busy with their traditions of their daily life, says Maria.
“These hidden talents certainly deserve more support and exposure and their paintings deserve far bigger audience than those of Salalah,” said another visitor at the exhibition.