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Experiments & Objects / 1979 – 2011 is the first major monographic exhibition of Hassan Sharif in the UAE and in Abu Dhabi. Hassan Sharif is a seminal artist who is deeply associated with the modern history and culture of the United Arab Emirates (UAE). He is a major figure in the artistic community of the UAE and has developed a strong body of work. Historically, Sharif did not have much public visibility in the UAE, although he admirably often represented the Emirates abroad. The exhibition, curated by Catherine David and Mohammed Kazem, begins with the artist’s early experiments and includes objects in addition to a series of his conceptual drawings and systemic works.
Sharif studied in Great Britain. He first started to draw caricatures producing abundantly and becoming well known for them. His art practice is experimental and strongly involved with materiality. He uses cotton, textile, metal, chord and plastic in order to create a variety of objects. His choice of materials reflects the production conditions that he lives and works in: a post-modern, post-global society. His materials also reflect different aspects of our time such as mass manufacturing, for example, through his use of cardboard and packaging – thus also reflecting an interest in human activity, not just his own process of art making but also that of others in other fields.
In his Performances and Experiments, the artist used his very body as an artistic medium by performing a series of expressive acts. These were recorded in photographs and their preparatory notes and sketches were preserved. Towards the end of the 1980s, they were documented and put up on signposts in a sequential order.
(From a press release)
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