Fereydoun Ave

Born in Tehran, Iran in 1945, Fereydoun Ave is a central figure in the Iranian art scene as he is one of the most important and influential
contemporary artists of Iran.

Nadia Jelassi

Nadia Jelassi, born in Tunisia in 1958. Jelassi presented her first works in 1990 at the Biennial of Young Creators from Europe and the Mediterranean at the Museum of Vielle Charité in Marseille, and later in 1992 at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Gibellina, Italy and the Metropolitan Museum in Tokyo.

Ismail Al Rifai

Ismail Al Rifai was born in Mayadin in 1967 and studied Fine Art at the University of Damascus. Al Rifai has served as a member of the Syrian Fine Arts Syndicate as well as the UAE Fine Arts Society and currently works as a researcher in the Department of Culture and Information in Sharjah. The multidisciplinary artist, writer, and poet’s work have evolved from abstract to figurative in the past few years, capturing humans, animals, and human-animal hybrid figures as a means of exploring the hidden beast within every man.  He has exhibited widely in solo and group exhibitions nationally and internationally and is the recipient of several literary and artistic awards including the Dubai Culture Award 2015, the first Prize at the Annual Emirates Fine Arts Society exhibition 2013, Sharjah Prize for Creativity for his published novel Stairway of Mud, 2006, Short Novel Award from the Emirates Writers Union, 2005 and Fine Arts Syndicate Award, Syria, 2002.

Oussama Baalbaki

Oussama Baalbaki was born in Beirut in 1978, where he studied at the Lebanese Academy of Fine Art. His delicate paintings, often executed
in photo realistic detail, consist of black-and-white self-portraits, most
containing a single surrealistic element.

Chaouki Chamoun

Born in Lebanon in 1942, Chaouki Chamoun studied Fine Art at the Lebanese University and received his MFA from Syracuse University in New York.  Between 1975 and 1979, Cahmoun continued his studies in Aesthetics and Studio Art at New York University where he was a full-time fellow in the Ph.D. program. His large-scale, colorful paintings are mostly inspired by landscapes that range from the expanse of the Arabian desert to the urban jungle of New York, and the mountains of the Bekaa Valley where he was born and raised.  In his series Desert Experience (2007-8), Chamoun looked to the boundless geographical terrain of the desert as a site of purity and simplicity, offering an escape from the political turmoil Lebanon was facing following the July War of 2006.  In 2013 a major exhibition of his work was held at the Beirut Exhibition Centre, the same year he published an artistic autobiography titled The Art and Life of Chaouki Chamoun, which contained over 300 illustrations accompanied by anecdotes, personal narratives, and details of his creative process. 

Ahmed Al Bahrani

Born in Babel in 1965, Ahmed Al Bahrani is a contemporary Iraqi artist and sculptor. After graduating from the Fine Arts Institute in Baghdad in 1988, he taught at the Academy of Fine Arts from 1992-94. Relocating to Qatar in 1998, he co-founded Mimar Gallery with architect Hazem Abu Naba’a and has exhibited regularly throughout the Middle East and internationally. In recent years, he earned a significant following in the Gulf art scene, where he has been featured in some of the region’s most prominent commercial art spaces, such as Art Sawa Gallery in Dubai and Albareh Art Gallery in Bahrain.  He has been commissioned for a number of public works in Iraq, Qatar and across the Middle East.  Constantly evolving his artistic approach, he works across different mediums, including painting, printmaking and reliefs. He lives and works in Qatar.

Imed Jemaiel

Born in Bizerte, Tunisia in 1965, Imed Jemaiel shifted his attention to the arts after two years of medical school. In 1990, he earned a degree in Fine Arts, specialising in printmaking. In 1992, he started teaching at the Higher Institute of Fine Arts in Tunisia.

Nihad Al Turk’s

Born in Aleppo in 1972, self-taught artist Nihad Al Turk’s work focuses on the existential crisis of the individual caught up in power struggles between good and evil. Based in Beirut, Al Turk situates his work against a backdrop of literature and philosophy, painting a recurrent cast of mythical demons, outcasts, and antiheroes.

Saoud Al Dhaheri

Born in Al-Ain city, United Arab Emirates (UAE) in 1987, Saoud Al Dhaheri [RF1] joined the Higher Colleges of Technology Photography Club, and later the Emirates Photography Society, to pursue his artistic passion.

Slimen Elkamel

Born in 1983 in Sidi Bouzid, Slimen Elkamel is a young visual artist and an extensively published art critic for newspapers, publications, and art catalogues.

Nja Mahdaoui

Born in Tunisia in 1937, Nja Mahdaoui graduated from the Academia Santa Andrea in Rome and the École du Louvre in Paris in 1967. As a visual artist he has mainly focused on calligraphy. Initially inspired by abstract painting, his work is remarkably innovative in the artistic field of the “written word”.

Katya Traboulsi

Born in 1960, Katya Traboulsi is a Beirut-based multimedia artist whose practice is characterized by the emotional intensity with which she confronts the effects of the Lebanese civil war.  Both her painting and sculptural works are characterized by her bold use of color, which disrupts the viewer’s expectations of the dark subject matter they are confronted with. Her solo exhibition Perpetual Identities (2007) held at the Salah Barakat Gallery saw presented 46 hand-crafted replicas of Lebanese war bomb shells adorned with colorful patterns, beads, and sculpted forms, thus transforming these destructive military objects into beautiful, ornate vessels.   In 2013, Traboulsi published Generation War, a body of work that traces the story of photojournalists who witnessed the civil war during the 80s – an homage to their efforts and a political project that seeks to record the country’s complex histories.  Traboulsi lived and worked in Dubaï from 1989 to 2016 before returning to her native Beirut.  Her work has been exhibited internationally since 1986 in Paris, London, Dubai, Kuwait, North America, the Algerian museum of Modern Art, and the International Armory Show in NYC.