The art of falcon painting

IN THE spirit of Dubai's exceptional art events this month, ArtWorks presents a selection of artists from the pool of impressive talent that is participating in the 'Flight of Falcons' project. Over 60 of them have come together this year to unleash their artistic



falprowess and raise money for charity. The beautifully decorated falcon sculptures, drawing on the rich cultural heritage associated with the regal falcon or 'shaheen', which stand nine feet high with a wingspan of more than six feet, are presented to the artists as white canvases that they bring to life.

"The project is first and foremost a public art project. We work closely with the local artist community, we enable the schools to participate in a city wide art project, and we have sponsors that are actively empowering young and aspiring artists and designers," said Patricia Palmer, Art Director of ArtWorks.

At the forefront of the new generation of local creatives is photographer, videographer and designer Asma Abdullah Marzooqi, who won the Emirates Photography Competition. Her peer, Shaima Hassan Al Mazmi, is also a student of graphic art at The University of Sharjah and has designed everything from postcards and stamps to a calendar for Medicins Sans Frontières. These ambitious ladies intern at ArtWorks while pursuing their studies.

fal2ArtWorks also succeeded in gathering an impressive roster of residing artists from 23 countries to work alongside one another. Hailing from a range of professions such as sculpting, jewellery design, calligraphy, graphic design, photography and painting, the artists had free reign over their designs resulting in a diverse collection of eclectic creations.

Master calligrapher, Khaled al Saa'i, has the rare ability to infuse his images with poetical vision through Arabic calligraphy with which he decorated four falcons. Heba Edrees used hieroglyphic from her native Egypt's history to write out a quote about the value of humanity by Shaikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai . One of the numerous participating graphic designers is Dima El Atab, L'Officiel Hommes Middle East's senior graphic designer, who was commissioned based on her structured interpretive designs for Dubai Properties and Culture Village falcons. On the other end of the spectrum, there are the likes of Syrian abstract artist, Nour Aladeen who provides his audience with colourful intelligent strokes of stimulating visuals over his falcons.

fal1"These designers represent just a small fraction of the individuals that lent their talent to this project. On a personal level, apart from raising money for charity, this is the most rewarding portion: showcasing local talent, bridging artists that usually work with different mediums to instead use the exact same canvas, and most of all it provides emerging unexposed talent with an opportunity to display their abilities and use this project as a stepping stone into the local art scene," continues Patricia.

The falcons are currently displayed across the city on busy crossroads as well as Mall of the Emirates, Ibn Battuta, Grosvenor House, Uptown Mirdif, Kempinski Hotel, Dubai Festival City, and Wafi Mall, among other locations.


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