As part of the Emirati-French Cultural Programme, Khalid Shafar, Talin Hazbar, Vikram Divecha, and Zeinab Alhashemi worked with traditional French manufacturers to design artworks inspired by the theme of ‘Time’.

'Co-Lab: Contemporary Art and Savoir-faire', a unique exhibition of four contemporary works of art created by UAE-based artists in collaboration with premium French manufacturers, on view at the Louvre Abu Dhabi will run until 25 March 2018.

Conceived and produced jointly by the Emirati and French authorities, the Emirati-French Cultural Programme - in dialogue with Louvre Abu Dhabi - fully embraces the creative momentum set in motion by the creation of the museum. First of its kind, this artistic programme is an innovative project based on the excellence of Emirati and French cultural traditions. Through a series of events, it illustrates the creative and skills of artists from both countries, aiming to strengthen their cultural cooperation.

image Co-Lab Photo Call © Louvre Abu Dhabi, Photo by Greg Garay

The artworks on display in this exhibition combine the artists’ creativity and artistic vision with the technique and know-how of the French manufacturers. The four artistic projects revolve around the central theme of ‘Time’. Each artist expressed this theme using different approaches and materials. The Sèvres ceramic techniques, the weaving art of Beauvais, the artistic glasses of Saint-Just and the architectural embroidery from MTX, are reworked and exalted by the creative minds of the four UAE-based artists, who have created unique artworks that reflect both an understanding of the UAE, and a reinvention of the use of historical French techniques. With a view to a mutual inspiration, the Manufacture Nationale de Sèvres opened its doors to Talin Hazbar to work on ceramics. The manufacturing company of Beauvais embarked upon a collaboration with Khalid Shafar, around the art of weaving. The luxury glassware firm of Saint-Just teamed up with Zeinab Alhashemi. The MTX Broderie Architecturale engaged with Vikram Divecha.

The first phase of this special project, revolving around creation and skills-trading, was first presented at the 2016 edition of Abu Dhabi Art, where the four artists and manufacturers exhibited their concept to the general audience and explained the inspiring cooperation and skills exchange that took place between them.

image Khalid Shafar / Courtesy of Louvre Abu Dhabi

image © Mobilier national, Thibaut Chapotot / Courtesy of Louvre Abu Dhabi

image Manufacture de la Savonnerie (© Mobilier national / Courtesy of Louvre Abu Dhabi

image Talin Hazbar / Courtesy of Louvre Abu Dhabi

image Talin Hazbar and Manufacture de Sèvres, cast / Courtesy of Louvre Abu Dhabi

image Throwing workshop Manufacture de Sèvres / Courtesy of Louvre Abu Dhabi

image Vikram Divecha / Courtesy of Louvre Abu Dhabi

image MTX Broderie Architecturale, © Veronique-Monti / Courtesy of Louvre Abu Dhabi

image Vikram Divecha, MTX Poster / Courtesy of Louvre Abu Dhabi

image Zeinab Alhashemi / Courtesy of Louvre Abu Dhabi

image Manufacture Streaky glass molten ball held by glass blower, © Philippe-Valery / Courtesy of Louvre Abu Dhabi

image Zeinab Alhashemi and La Verrerie de Saint Just / Courtesy of Louvre Abu Dhabi

HE Mohamed Khalifa Al Mubarak, Chairman of the Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi, said: “2017 comes to a close with the opening of Co-Lab, part of the two-year Emirati-French Cultural Programme. The Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi looks to further local artistic practice, reflecting the UAE’s rich heritage and dynamic contemporary culture. The concept of 'Co-Lab' reflects this fundamental mandate, bringing together the traditional and the innovative, the past and the present to inspire a new generation of artists. In 2018, both countries will celebrate with a year dedicated to Emirati-French cultural dialogue.”

Manuel Rabaté, Director of Louvre Abu Dhabi, said: “Louvre Abu Dhabi’s artworks span human existence from pre-historic times to the present day, and actively nurturing contemporary art practice is an important element of our mandate as a museum. The UAE is home to a vibrant community of artists, designers and contemporary practitioners, and these four artists are amongst the most talented in the country. At a time when artists around the world are rediscovering and incorporating the rich history of craftsmanship and traditional artistry into their practice, 'Co-Lab: Contemporary Art and Savoir-faire' is a platform for creative exchange and discovery.”

Alia Zaal Lootah, the curator of the Exhibition, said: “It is with great pleasure that we display in the Louvre Abu Dhabi these collaborative works, which have been two years in the making. This marriage of skills has resulted in true mutual inspiration, each partner learning from the other, and the results are unique. We look forward to sharing them with the public, and hope to inspire up and coming artists and designers to explore new techniques and collaborations.”

'Co-Lab: Contemporary Art and Savoir-faire' will be on display until 25 March 2018.

  • No comments
Add a comment
(to add comment, please )