Sharjah: His Highness Dr Shaikh Sultan Bin Mohammad Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, on Wednesday inaugurated The Jameel Prize exhibition at the Sharjah Museum of Islamic Civilisation.
The exhibition, which is open to the public until October 24, features a collection of artworks brought together by the Victoria and Albert Museum in London.
Speaking at a press conference, Manal Ataya, Director General of Sharjah Museums Department, said the exhibition sought to highlight the achievements of contemporary artists directly inspired by the aesthetic vibrancy of Islamic civilisation.
"The selected artworks not only inspire but also encourage discussion, and contribute to much needed intercultural dialogue and understanding," she said.
The Jameel Prize is an international award for contemporary art and design inspired by Islamic tradition which also seeks to explore the relationship between Islamic traditions of arts, crafts and contemporary works as part of a wider debate on Islamic culture and its role in modern society.
"The Jameel Prize 2009 is our key exhibition event at our museum this year. The event will offer a new platform to understand the continuation of Islamic heritage and artistic traditions in a contemporary context," said Aisha Deemas, curator of the Sharjah Museum of Islamic Civilisation.
Awarded every two years, the Jameel Prize is open to artists and designers of all nationalities and has drawn participants from the USA, Germany, Lebanon, Uzbekistan and China.
All exhibits that are part of the show at the Museum of Islamic Civilisation were originally displayed at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London from July to September 2009. At the heart of the exhibition is Iranian artist Arfuz Amighi's creation titled ‘1001 Pages' which won the Jameel Prize 2009.
The winning piece uses light and shadow effects to create a complex design, and the suspended exhibit is illuminated using an overhead projector that casts a shadow of the pattern against a wall.
The exhibition also features the artworks of eight other artists and designers including Hamra Abbas, Susan Hefuna and Camille Zakharia.
The event is being held in coordination with the British Council which is simultaneously organising an educational programme to go with the exhibition.
"By running a programme of activities to complement the exhibition, [we] aim to provide an opportunity for all to reflect on the interesting theme of The Jameel Prize. Whether it is for arts enthusiasts, university students who want to improve their skills, or for emerging artists and the general public to develop digital art work," said Michel Bechara, Director of Projects, British Council.
What: The Jameel Prize exhibition
When: runs until October 24, 2010
Where: The Sharjah Museum of Islamic Civilisation