Memory of the Arches by Saloua Raouda Choucair

Inspired by the architecture of Morocco, this artwork offers possibilities for self-reflection.

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A leading Modernist artist, Saloua Raouda Choucair was born in Beirut in 1916 and passed away in the same city in 2017, aged 101. Her work is held in many international museum collections, including Mathaf: Arab Museum of Modern Art. Her multi-object sculpture Bench (1969-71) from Mathaf’s collection is installed in MIA Park. Choucair’s work was driven by an interest in the unitary structures of mathematics, science, Islamic architecture, Arabic script and Sufism.

Memory of the Arches is inspired by architectural forms and tropes prevalent in Morocco; particularly the arches and doorways that the artist encountered during a visit. Choucair viewed the archways as an extension of the line and circle of Mosque architecture, forms that preoccupied her for their symbolic reference to transcendence and infiniteness. Memory of the Arches is installed in a shallow pool of water, which collects the sculpture’s reflection. The work is a fluid experience of form and thought, offering possibilities for self-reflection and knowledge.

Dark brown large sculpture of arches placed on top of each other

Saloua Raouda Choucair (b. 1916). Memory of the Arches, installed 2022. Bronze, patina; 3.83 x 2.64 x 1.85 m. Photo: Courtesy of Qatar Creates.