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2022 Student Initiative: Meet the Artists

A fall 2022 initiative led by our Public Art team invited students and alumni to propose a permanent or temporary artwork, to be commissioned and installed with the support of Qatar Museums. After a rigorous review process, three artists have been selected to display their works.

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About the Artists

The selected artists are Aisha Al-Abdulla, Zeest Marrium and Maryam Al-Tajer.

Aisha Al-Abdulla

Aisha Al-Abdulla is a multidisciplinary artist. She is currently a Painting and Printmaking student at Virginia Commonwealth University graduating in 2023. Influenced by anime and video games, her work revolves around character design, world-building and themes related to her personal experience. She has participated in multiple group shows such as the GCB MiniPrint exhibition in Berlin, and the Studio 675 and From Near exhibitions at the art gallery at Multaqa in Education City. Moreover, she collaborated with the local brand Ortensia for their summer collection campaign in 2021.

Al-Abdulla’s sculpture installation revolves around the activities of the fictional character Raincoat Girl, a creature from a series called Above the Cloud, who uses rain to cleanse the Earth from pollution and other things created by human chaos.

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Aisha Al-Abdulla. Raincoat Girl on Earth, 2023. Cast concrete and paint; approximately 16.5 x 11.5 x 25 cm. Photo: Laura Murane.

Zeest Marrium

Zeest Marrium is a senior at Northwestern University, pursuing an undergraduate degree in Media Industries and Technology and minors in Anthropology and Middle East Studies. Her research interests focus on the museum landscape, exploring them as structures of inequality and repositories of culture. As a visual artist and creator, Marrium believes in bringing the audience near the artefacts to enhance the visitor experience. Therefore, she is inclined to use visual modes of storytelling: photographs and short films in particular.

Daʼūb, which translates to ‘tireless,’ is a photographic peek into the behind-the-scenes of the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™. Qatar relies on about one million construction workers, who make up more than a third of the country’s workforce. Many leave behind families who depend on them financially. This photographic installation monumentalises the work of the migrant workers that went into building infrastructure for the global sporting event.

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Zeest Marrium. daʼūb, 2023. Cast aluminum, stainless steel, paint, glass; 1.5 x 1.8 m. Photo: Laura Murane

Maryam Al-Tajer

Maryam Al-Tajer is a fine arts honour graduate from Virginia Commonwealth University. Her approach to art and design is primarily contemporary and poetic. She is passionate about breaking the rules of calligraphy and the formation of Arabic words. She explores different ways of portraying calligraphy by experimenting with various methods and mediums.

Al-Tajer’s sculpture Birdakh is inspired by the process of bardakha, which is the pounding of thezari (golden threads of the bisht) with an iron hammer to clean it until it returns to its original bright golden colour. This process increases the cohesion and luster of the zari threads and shows the beautiful inscriptions and decorations in them. The artwork refers to the recent Gulf crisis period, when relations were about to fade like the tired thread of an old bisht; the polishing process (bardakha) was needed to restore the Gulf bisht’s original beautiful golden colour.

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Maryam Al-Tajer. Birdakh, 2023. Fiberglass; 2 x 2 m. Photo: Laura Murane

The artists will be showing their works at Liwan Design Studio and Lab till the 15th of March.

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