Artists explore how the pandemic impacted their creative process


 The Fire Station: Artist in Residence today unveils Grey Times, an exhibition encompassing the works of artists who participated in the fifth edition of its annual Artist in Residence Programme (AIR5). The exhibition marks the end of the Artist in Residence programme and is centred on the current context of the global outbreak of COVID-19, characterised by uncertainty and unprecedented challenges.

The initial plan for this year’s Artist in Residence Programme — curated by Dr. Bahaa Abudaya and Saida Ali Al-Khulaifi — was for artists to engage with the relationship between the visual arts and literature. However, the pandemic meant artists were unable to embark on creative exploration at the Fire Station’s studios but rather had to carry out their respective conceptual journeys in the confines of their homes.

Commenting on the exhibition, Dr. Abudaya, said: “With the current situation, people have been forced to make drastic changes to their lifestyle and livelihood. Within this challenging context, we have invited artists to embark on a journey of self-exploration and examine the relationship they have with their immediate surroundings and the external world during a global pandemic.”

The exhibition will include artworks created during the residency, during which the artists take their passion to the next level by moving into one of the available studios, collaborating with fellow creators, and developing their own artistic technique. The artists showcasing their works as part of the 2020-2021 Artist in Residence Programme include: Aisha Al-Muhannadi, Ameera Al-Aji, Ebtesam Al-Hothi, Hadeer Omar, Haytham Sharrouf, Jaser Alagha, Latifa Al-Kuwari, Majdulin Nasrallah, Mariam Rafehi, Maryam Al-Maadhadi, Mashael Al Hejazi, Maysaa Almumin, Muna Al-Bader, Naila Al-Thani, Noor Yousef, Suzana Jouma, Hind Al Saad and Ameena Al Yousef.

Through the artworks created during the participating artists’ residency, Grey Times artists sought to answer the questions, “Who am I?” and “Who are they?” The works reflect the evolution and adaptability of the creative process in relation to limitations imposed by the pandemic i.e., the lack of studio space and social engagement, limited creative materials, execution, and installation.

AIR5 is an annual initiative, established in 2015, that nurtures creative talent from across the country and worldwide.

Grey Times runs from 20 January to 24 July at the Fire Station.

GO: Visit https://www.firestation.org.qa/ for more information.

Admission

Opening hours for the Fire Station: 9 am- 7pm Saturday through Thursdays and 1:30 pm-7 pm on Fridays.

Qatar Museums has implemented protocols in accordance with recommendations from Qatar’s Health Protection & Communicable Disease Control office of the Ministry of Public Health. In keeping with the guidelines set by the Ministry of Public Health, a limited number of visitors and staff will be allowed in the Fire Station at any given time.

Upon arrival, visitors will be required to present a “green” health status on the Ehteraz virus-tracing app. Masks are required for all visitors (12 years of age and older). Each person will also be checked for a normal temperature reading at the entrance. Visitors who have a temperature or do not have a mask will not be allowed into the Fire Station.

More information about QM’s preventative measures for health and safety can be found here