Word into art
Artists of modernmidle east dubai 2008
Venetia porter
Foreword by Saeb Eigner
Venetia porter
With assistance form isabelle causse and aimee froom
Foreword by Saeb Eigner
Word into art
In memory of my mother, Thea Porter, who introduced me to the contemporary art of the Middle East
For Charles, Emily and Rhiannon
© 2006 The Trustees of the British Museum
Venetia Porter has asserted the right to be identified as the author of this work
First published in 2006 by The British Museum Press A division of The British Museum Company Ltd 38 Russell Square, London WC1B 3QQ
A catalogue record for this book is available from the British Library
Cased edition:
ISBN-13: 978-0-7141-1163-6 ISBN-10: 0-7141-1163-5
Paperback edition:
ISBN-13: 978-0-7141-1164-3 ISBN-10: 0-7141-1164-3
Dubai Holding is proud to support the exhibition Word into Art. which represents the first time that such a wide range of art, by over seventy-five artists from the Middle East, has been exhibited in one location. It shows the strong influence that Arabic, one of the most beautiful calligraphic languages in the world, continues to exert over artists of the modern generation and how it has inspired modern art in the region in so many different ways.
This exhibition provides a singular opportunity to experience the impact of the rich literary traditions of Arabic on art today. Therefore, I am delighted that such a rich repository of art as the British Museum is putting on this exhibition. I certainly hope you enjoy it.
H.E. MohammadAl Gergawi Executive Chairman, Dubai Holding
87 Sabah Nairn
Cairo Faces
H 175.0 cm, W 150.0 cm
Sabah Nairn's intention in her pictures, which include
rolled-up newspaper such as this combined with
photographs of people going about their daily lives, is
to draw attention to, and visualize in a concrete way,
'the widening gap between two often incommensurate worlds:
the international arena of the media and global politics and
the everyday world of ordinary Egyptians and their daily effort
to survive. Everyday struggles have taken the place of the
nationalist struggles in this postcolonial world order while
waiting has replaced action.'
('Faultlines', 50th Venice Biennale 2003, press release)