I decided to consolidate and ended up with a messy title, but it’s the only way I can do this right now and move on to other things. I’ve decided to sandwich the last of my UK days in between two Airplane Timeline entries. It makes more sense this way. Bon appetit! Read More
I am finding being in the UK rather difficult this time. I don’t know if it’s my long stay (two weeks) when I’m missing my kids already, Naz leaving tonight or the loneliness I’m feeling without *him*. It’s not like I hadn’t been here before without him in my life, but somehow it’s sadder this time round. And it’s not like I care as much as I used to. I don’t think it’s about him specifically; it’s about not having someone special to share these moments with. Especially if you’re staying at a romantic inn (with his and hers shower robes) called Langshott Manor Hotel. Read More
I’m creating thirty eves that I’m going to be sending off to a select number of individuals who I feel are going to take an active part in her story. Of course it’s an arduous process of drawing, cutting (hate the cutting!) and writing details on the back. Then there’s the posting which I actually look forward to. I think the post office is my favorite place to be. Read More
I finally met one of my Instagram heroes David Habchy in his coastal hometown of Jounieh, Lebanon. I plan to publish a whole post about meeting David and his Waraq collective partner and co-founder Hussein Nakhal. But for now, I must make do with posting his Instagram shots from this morning because I only have internet on my phone. Check out his remarkable gallery at @davidhabchy. Read More
Listen to Amazed by Poe
Finally my brother Mohammed’s long-awaited photos from Secretary opening night. I love that he shoots in black and white, and when he shoots in color it’s always so vibrant. I can’t thank him enough for always being so supportive. Big hug. Read More
When I was little, I used to love it when, in Egyptian movies, the heroine would receive a letter. I would scurry in my seat in anticipation of what would happen next. First she’d tear the envelope open, with passion, then she’d unfold the letter, with passion (the crinkle oh my GOD), and lastly she’d read the letter with passion. Sometimes she’d even rip or crumble up the letter. With passion. Her manicured hands, her glossy lips, her teary eyes. They all went so well with the things she did with her letter.
So in keeping with the spirit of both vintage movies and Secretary, I thought: why not prompt visitors to write their own letters? This piece, entitled write.fold.enclose.lick.stack was a last minute addition to the exhibition. It consisted of three notepads, three stacks of envelopes and two pens. Guests were invited to do what the title suggested. And I’m glad to say that because many paid attention and obliged, I’m one happy bunny right now, surrounded by all these letters. And because of that, I would hire each and every one of them as my personal secretary. Read More
Listen to Woe Be Gone by Ani DiFranco, off the Sombreve playlist:
Apart from having the coolest name ever, Jenny Casanova took some really lively photos at the opening of Secretary. She was the lady with the red-cased mini-iPad standing in the corners taking candid shots.Thank you, Jenny, for sharing these with me. Read More
Listen to Aventine by Agnes Obel, off the Sombreve playlist:
Last night has finally come and sadly gone. I had been anticipating it since May, and for the last six months I have been working obsessively, compulsively, tirelessly to reach Secretary status. It was torturous creating drawings I was excited about without posting on either Instagram or here. It was important to keep my project under wraps because I wanted there to be an element of surprise. Simultaneously, I was working on ‘red herring’ drawings and paintings to throw people off the scent. It was exhausting. And now it’s time to share. Finally!
As with all my previous exhibitions, there are two or three photographers who stand out. These are people who are dear and close to my heart and who thoughtfully capture the spirit of my shows through their perspectives. In this post I’ll share with you Reem Algharabali’s photos. For those of you who could not attend last night’s opening of Secretary, I hope this post gives you some insight.
Thank you, Reem. Not only for the pictures, but for being a familiar face in the crowd.
Tomorrow is the last day of Secretary. I do hope that those of you who are in Kuwait and haven’t yet seen the show come. I will be there from 10am to 4pm, and for those who come, I have a special pocket just for you.
In August I was asked by Loft965‘s Nasser AlQatami to create an Eve for his September playlist. He explained it was an annual list which was traditionally broody and moody; a little like me, a little like Eve. Of course I said yes. He told me how his playlist titles were always portmanteaus so together we came up with Sombreve. It has a French ring to it, but I like it despite the fact. Click here to download the playlist. Oh and the whole point of all this is that I’ve been wondering what to play tonight. I’m usually so sure and prepared but not with this show. So this morning driving back from dropping off the children at school, Sombreve popped to mind and I immediately Whatsapped Nasser about it, and thankfully he not only said yes but had it delivered on a flashdrive and CD. Now that’s lofty service. Thank you, Nasser!
After painting my first two Centerfolds, I decided that they would seem a little out of place in my upcoming exhibition. So I scrapped work on the third (and originally fourth) painting. Yesterday my dear friend Mai visited the gallery and asked me where they were. I told her that I felt they were superfluous and irrelevant. To that she objected and said that they would actually ‘clinch’ the show. So I decided to put them back in. This morning I completed my third Centerfold thanks to Mai. And this is why it’s important to have your loved ones visit pre-show. Read More
Yesterday the crew at the Sultan Center and I began preparing for my exhibition next Tuesday. It’s a relief to begin but my brain is all over the place. There are so many details that I have to see to and still a few ideas that need to be tested out. I am taking a deep, week-long breath and hoping it all works out to my expectations. Fingers crossed. Read More