Middle-east Arab News Opinion | Asharq Al-awsat

'Colors from Homs'...Art Exhibition in Istanbul - ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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London – “Homs, known as the mother of black stones granted the Arab-Syrian painting a stream of colors, which made it the city of rainbows. Painters, who are familiar with numerous artistic styles and perspectives – their eyes on their city, and their imagination wandering around the world- addressed an artistic speech which humans can interact with, no matter where they are.

“Homs hopes its artists would return and rebuild its ruined walls with their stones of colors,” with those words, Homs born Syrian Poet Mohamed Aladdin Abdul Mawla presented the “Colors from Homs” exhibition hosted by “Kalimat Hall” in Istanbul with the participation of 12 painters from Homs.

The exhibition which featured more than 30 artworks, aims to introduce Homs for non-Arab audience by introducing its artists who were separated by the war, as some of them chose to stay in the city, while others chose asylum. The event also aims to present this city and its culture for the youths of the new Syrian generation growing up as refugees in asylum countries.

The event’s coordinator Nashwa Hamdoun says: “the idea of the exhibition emerged from the importance of introducing ourselves as Syrians in asylum societies, and to shed the lights on the Syrian cities and their social, artistic, and cultural aspects which were concealed by the news of war, pain, and oppression.

This exhibition is also important to remind our kids, who are growing up as migrants, of their cities, culture, traditions, and customs. For this purpose, we chose the art of painting, the fastest mean of communication that requires no translation.

Most art galleries in Homs were destroyed or robbed, therefore, we saw that the organization of this exhibition will reserve what was left. This event has become a duty urged by our responsibility toward our children and the loyalty for our culture.”

Nashwa Hamdoun expressed her deep disappointment that the Western world is ignorant towards Syrians and their culture; as it merely sees them as victims and refugees who are fleeing hell. Although holding an exhibition for Homs’ artists in Istanbul came a bit late, but Hamdoun thinks it’s better late than never. She hopes for this initiative to succeed and leave behind the anticipated echoes, in order to organize further cultural events concerned with Syrians from different regions – especially that Syria holds myriads of talents that should be spotlighted.

Concerning the selection of Homs from many other Syrian cities, the event’s coordinator said: “Homs is a city of culture and history, but it has always faced marginalization compared to Damascus, the political capital and Aleppo, the economic capital. Homs’ artists never had their share of attention, and the city always lacked art galleries.
However, this didn’t hinder the emergence of distinguished cultural and artistic figures in it. These figures deserve to be gathered today in Istanbul, one of the most important historic cities which embraces the biggest Syrian community.

As per the exhibition’s preparation, the coordinator said it took her six months to contact all the Syrian Homs-born artists she knows, and to bring them together in a non-profit exhibition which aims to shed lights on the artistic phenomenon in Homs.

The “Colors from Homs” exhibition kicked off on Saturday in Istanbul.

The paintings featured during the exhibition will be displayed again during the “Echo from Homs” gathering which will take place in July at the Depo Gallery in Istanbul. The event will comprise a painting exhibition, lectures on the history of architecture, books-discussion for Homs writers, and many other cultural activities.

This event is expected to expand to other galleries in different Turkish and European cities.