Athens, Asharq Al-Awsat- A group of female Saudi artists are exhibiting their work in the Divani Caravel Hotel in Athens for the first time after receiving an invitation from the Saudi ambassador to Greece, Saleh al-Ghamdi.
This group is comprised of 9 artists; Widad Saleh al-Bakr, Seham Tawfiq Muqqadem, Mudadi Al-Baz, Princess Ghadah Bint Khalid al-Saud, Khadijah Tawfiq Muqqadem, Hala al-Amary, Aminah Fiqqi, Samira Ismail, and Nahed Al-Abd Al-Rahman. They were also accompanied by renowned Saudi Arabian artist Ibrahim Youssuf Bin Omar, who is also the Director of the Saudi Society for Culture and Art in the Al-Sharqiyah governorate.
The artist Ibrahim Youssuf informed Asharq Al-Awsat that the majority of the artists participating in the exhibition were from the Al-Sharqiyah governorate, and their work displayed a number of different abstract and realist styles. This group has previously exhibited their work in Bahrain and Yemen, although this is the first time that they have exhibited their artwork in Greece, and is the first exhibition of planned exhibitions in other European countries. The majority of artists were awarded prizes for their work. Ibrahim Youssuf also participated in this exhibition as a special guest where he exhibited four African inspired artworks.
The artist Khadijah Muqqadem informed Asharq Al-Awsat that she was participated in this exhibition with three pieces of art depicting Arabian horses and [Arabian figures] dressed in traditional tress. She said that “In Greece, I exhibited my artistic work and my culture, and I benefited from Greek culture and various [artistic] effects.” She also added that Saudi Arabian women enjoy a high level of cultural and diplomatic dealings in their work.
As for the artist Widad Saleh al-Bakr, who also participated in the Athens exhibition with three abstract paintings, she informed Asharq Al-Awsat that she had previously participated in a number of exhibitions in London, Bahrain, and Yemen. She also said “I would like to bring the message to the world that the Saudi woman is liberated, there are no social constraints, and that the Saudi woman has a high sense for helping others.”
Widad Saleh al-Bakr added that the Albaylsan centre that the group belongs to teaches drawing and other artistic techniques, and is a non-profit organization. The Greek artist Kristina Smith, and her father Yeros Smith, hosted this exhibition in Athens, and this exhibition will later be transferred to the Kristina Smith gallery in the coastal region of Portoceli, south of Athens.