Curated by: Martina Corgnati
In collaboration with Ayyam Gallery (Location)
Opening reception: Saturday, 9/4/2016
Time: 7:00 – 9:00pm
Exhibition dates: 10/4/2016 – 21/5/2016
It has been 4 years since the shutdown of Shurooq Amin’s last show in Kuwait and the subsequent censorship of her paintings. Since then, she has only exhibited her work abroad. She has been fortunate to have the representation and backing of Ayyam Gallery, who believed in her, gave her a platform to raise her voice uncensored, and invited her to show her work in Dubai and London, and now Contemporary Art Platform – Kuwait have invited her to exhibit in Kuwait again, to show her newest work in an exhibition titled ‘It’s a Mad World’ which opens 9th of April 2016 at 7:00pm, in collaboration with Shurooq Amin’s representative gallery Ayyam. It’s a Mad World will be curated by Martina Corgnati with whom Shurooq Amin spent time at the 56th Venice Biennale where Corgnati curated the pavilion Shurooq Amin was part of: Contemporary Practices Pavilion.
It is only fitting that the original title for this show – Apocalypso Now – should be changed to It’s a Mad World, to arrive full circle from her last show in Kuwait, It’s a Man’s World. As simple as the title is, as meaningful as it is for Shurooq Amin, since the pattern (semantically, syntactically, and phonetically) – and full circle – from It’s a Man’s World to It’s a Mad World is explicit. It’s a Mad World consists of 18 artworks and an installation.
Who is Shurooq Amin ?
Born to a Kuwaiti father and Syrian mother, Shurooq Amin is a mixed-media interdisciplinary artist and an Anglophone poet whose purpose is to instigate change in society. She has a PhD in Ekphrasis, the connection between art and poetry, and has been published and anthologized internationally. She has been a guest speaker at various universities, a judge for various events, and has been interviewed by BBC’s Stephen Sackur on HARDTalk (Nov 17, 2014). Amin has had 12 solo exhibitions, more than 40 group exhibitions, her paintings have been sold at auctions, commissioned privately and publicly, awarded prizes locally and internationally, and shown at biennales and art fairs. A retrospective of her work was featured in the biannual art journal Contemporary Practices: Visual Arts from the Middle East. Amin’s poetry has been published into two books to date, in more than 40 literary journals across the globe, and has been anthologized in the Gathering the Tide: An Anthology of Arabian Gulf Poetry by Ithaca Publishers in association with the Virginia Commonwealth University of Qatar. Her second volume of poetry “The Hanging of the Wind” is taught as part of the contemporary literature curriculum in universities in the Gulf. She is the first Kuwaiti to be nominated for the prestigious Pushcart Prize in December 2007 in the USA. In 2012 she was nominated as one of Kuwait’s 46 Inspirational People in Sheikha Intisar Al-Sabah’s book The Alchemy of Wisdom. On March 2012 her show It’s a Man’s World was shut down by Kuwaiti authorities and her work was banned in the country. In April 2013, Amin was awarded the title of Artist of the Year by the Arab Woman Awards, and has since become the first Kuwaiti woman to be auctioned at Christie’s auction house. She exhibited her 2013 series Popcornographic during Art Dubai with Ayyam Gallery. Her 2014 series We’ll Build This City on Art and Love was exhibited from September 14th to October 23, 2014, with Ayyam Gallery, DIFC, Dubai, and exhibited in London from 12th November 2014 to 10th January 2015, with an artist’s talk and panel discussion. Amin is currently exhibiting at the 56th International Venice Biennale, from May 9 to November 22, 2015, with the pavilion In the Eye of the Thunderstorm: Effervescent Practices from the Arab World and Asia. Her installation is composed of 3 projections with 3 sculptures forming one large scale installation exploring the issues of corruption, social taboos, and pollution both on a regional level and a global one. She is represented by Ayyam Gallery.