“WHITE SUN” Exhibition Featuring Photographs United by Qatar's Historical Context at Cosmoscow

Aug 28, 2019 2:17PM

As part of a 5-year partnership between Cosmoscow and Qatar Airways Artists: Henry Dallal, Abdulla Artuyev, Soundwalk Collective, Vlad Loktev, Mikhail Rozanov, and Danila Tkachenko Curator: Anastasia Shavlokhova

Abdulla Artuev, Image courtesy of Cosmoscow.

As part of the programme of the 7th Cosmoscow International Contemporary Art Fair, the Embassy of the State of Qatar to the Russian Federation and Qatar Airways will present the “White Sun” exhibition project uniting photographs and an installation by Soundwalk Collective that are related to Qatar’s historical context. The exhibition will include works by such photographers as Henry Dallal, Abdulla Artuyev, Vlad Loktev, Mikhail Rozanov, and Danila Tkachenko.

“Arabian Sands”, an audiovisual installation by Soundwalk Collective, and “Oasis”, a project by Danila Tkachenko, form the centerpiece of the exhibition.

“Oasis” series was created upon commission from the National Museum of Qatar as part of Year of Culture Qatar-Russia 2018. In this series, Danila explores the issues of preservation of national identity now that the world’s picture has changed following Qatar’s economic takeoff.

The installation by Soundwalk Collective is an audiovisual interpretation of an acoustic phenomenon known as “singing dunes”. Under the wind, grains of sand roll down the dunes, generating sound waves between layers of dry and wet sand resulting in a bewitching melody.

Exploring Orientalism as a style, Soundwalk Collective created a work consisting of ephemeral musical phrases resembling a sound mirage. It is a piece of Middle Eastern music revised through the prism of Western consciousness, a metaphor, and imaginary geography. The sounds make us recall the image of the desert as a mystical and eternal place, and build a musical bridge between the West and the East.

Among the well-known artists who have collaborated with the group on numerous occasions are singer-songwriter Patti Smith, American photographer Nan Goldin, and European film director Jean-Luc Godard.

Henry Dallal creates beautiful and vivid stories about Arabian horses, filming them in their natural habitat, the desert. One of the oldest breeds in the world created by man, Arabian horses are light and hardy. It allows breeding a horse suitable for military operations, fast and long runs in the desert.

The exhibition will also feature works by Abdulla Artuyev, Vlad Loktev, and Mikhail Rozanov.

Modern Qatar – a state that has made a giant modernization leap over the past 50 years – is located on Qatar Peninsula most of which is occupied by the desert. For thousands of years this area was inhabited by nomadic tribes for which the desert became the key image of their cultural code. The desert with its unique light and air environment, its vastness and unfamiliar color intensity is the primary background for the stories told by the artists participating in the “White Sun” exhibition. The “White Sand” exhibition is a phantasy-mirage that brings together images of traditional Qatari culture within contemporary context.

Cosmoscow and Qatar Airways announced the start of 5-year partnership within the Qatar-Russia Year of Culture when the Main Partner was represented at the main venue of the Fair at Gostiny Dvor with an exhibition of Qatari contemporary art in entitled What We Are Made Of. The seventh Cosmoscow Fair is taking place at Moscow’s Gostiny Dvor on September 6–8, 2019.

Danila Tkachenko, Oasis, Image courtesy of Cosmoscow.

About Cosmoscow

Cosmoscow International Contemporary Art Fair was launched by art historian, young Russian artists’ patron and collector Margarita Pushkina in 2010 and aims to galvanise Russian and international collectors, galleries and artists. Cosmoscow is Russia’s only international art fair taking place every September with its own spot on the international art calendar

The 7th Cosmoscow Fair is taking place at Moscow’s Gostiny Dvor on September 6–8 with the Privilege and VIP Preview on September 5, supported by its long-standing partners: Main Partner Qatar Airways, Strategic Partner Credit Suisse, Automobile Partner Audi, Official Partner Ruinart, Jewelry partner Mercury, Beauty partner La Prairie and Official Hotel St. Regis Moscow Nikolskaya.

Soundwalk Collective, Image courtesy of Cosmoscow.