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Barjeel Continues Introducing Arab Artists to International Art Scene | Anna Seaman | The National



Steve Sabella (whose photographic work In Exile, based on his conception that his city of birth, Jerusalem, does not exist, went to Zoom Art Fair) said the foundation was clearly formed according to vision and taste rather than on the basis on "art market fevers".
Although it is too soon to tell if there have been any benefits from the overseas exposure, he said he had received many e-mails regarding his inclusion in Residua, which opened in October.
"[This] is an indication that synergy is at work," he said.
Mr Sabella said that the foundation had a sound reputation, with people in London, where he is living, congratulating him on being part of the collection.
"The Barjeel Foundation can set an example of how to inject artists with critical acclaim," he said.
Jawad al Malhi, whose work House No 197 is an intricate, six-metre-long photograph of a Palestinian refugee camp, said it was important to have his work available to audiences worldwide.
"Art plays a very important role in challenging stereotypes and Arab artists in particular have an important role in provoking 'the West' to reflect on its stereotypes of the Arab world," he said.
Mr Sabella added that the gap of knowledge in the West about Middle Eastern art was diminishing with efforts like the foundation.
"To change perceptions takes time, but as long as the mission and vision of educated individuals thrive, stereotypes are bound to be shattered in the end."



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