Qatar Museums announces first 20 artists to benefit from the “Artist in Residence” programme at the old Doha Fire Station

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Under the visionary guidance of Qatar Museums Chairperson H.E Sheikha Al Mayassa bint Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, Qatar Museums (QM) today announced the 20 artists who have been selected to take part in the innovative “Artist in Residence” programme, which is hosted in the newly-renovated Doha Fire Station building.

Launched in March 2015, the “Artist in Residence” programme is scheduled to kick off in mid-September, and marks an important milestone in QM’s goal to provide support to the next generation of cultural producers and to help inspire an indigenous culture of creativity and innovation in Qatar. The residency programme will open to local Qatari artists and residents of Qatar first, and then to regional artists at a later stage. The creative exchange programme runs in nine-month cycles, with a different group of artists taking part in each cycle.

A group of six elite jury members convened twice to agree on the final 20 artists from a highly talented pool of more than 150 applications. The judging panel included Sheikh Abdullah Al Thani, Mahmoud Obaidi, Fatima Al Rumaihi, Jean-Paul Engelen, Wissam Al Mana and Rhys Himsworth. The group of 20 artists, which includes 11 Qataris, consists of artists from a range of different disciplines including art, photography, design, architecture and others.

To welcome and congratulate the inaugural group of residents, H.E Sheikha Al Mayassa bint Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani and Hala Al Khalifa (Director of the Fire Station) hosted an intimate get-together where residents were able to meet and greet one another, as well as share with Her Excellency their vision and plans for their respective residencies.

Commenting on this occasion, Hala Al Khalifa, Director of the Fire Station, said:

 

“It is with great pleasure that we announce the twenty wonderfully talented artists that have been selected as part of our Qatar Museums’ Fire Station: Artist in Residence programme. Each application that we received was unique and truly impressive and every artist used their talent and creativity and showed their commitment to this initiative. This Artist in Residence programme perfectly reflects Qatar Museums’ vision of enriching the lives of all those who live in and visit Qatar, as well as inspiring an indigenous culture of creativity and innovation, and we hope that the nine month residency will enable these talented artists to be recognised on an international scale to become the creative sparks of our future. We would also like to thank the independent jury for volunteering their time to select the 20 chosen artists from what was a very talented pool of applicants”




The residency programme will involve mentoring and tutoring from respected local artists and will give the residents the opportunity to be in close contact with some of the big international names that Qatar Museums continually attracts to Qatar, such as Richard Serra, Louise Bourgeois, Takashi Murakami and Damian Hirst. This is in addition to access to world class curators, art historians and professors. The Fire Station grounds will also in due course feature public attractions such as a park, an informal library, an arts and crafts shop, a cinema, a plaza and a restaurant, all aimed at creating an engaging environment and cultural venue for everyone living in Qatar.

 

The Fire Station will also be hosting open studio visits for art dealers in the region. In addition, the Fire Station will be collaborating with QM’s free arts and cultural membership programme – the Culture Pass, and will be offering a variety of activities and benefits for its members to enjoy. Housed in the original garage of the Fire Station building, the Garage Gallery will also host the residency end-of-year exhibition in June 2016 and will be open to artists, students and professors from universities across Qatar and the region for bookings.

 

In parallel, and owing to popular demand, the Fire Station has extended the 555 exhibition to run until October. The exhibition was launched in homage to “The Art Centre”: the very first artist in residence initiative that took place in Doha in the early 1990s and which ran for a decade. Curated by HE Sheikh Hassan Al Thani, the 555 exhibition aims to showcase a pivotal era in the development of arts not only in Qatar, but in the region as a whole.

The selected 20 artists that will take part in the “Artist in Residence” programme are:

 

  • Noor Abuissa

  • Nasser Al-Attiyah

  • Sebastian Betancur-Montoya

  • Tarek Darwish

  • Waqas Farid

  • Maryam Al-Homaid

  • Shaha Al Khulaifi

  • Othman Khunji

  • Kelly Lowe

  • Charles Mahaffee

  • Wassem Al Marzouki

  • Lulu Al-Musfir

  • Roudha Ibrahim Al-Nassr

  • Sara Al Obaidly

  • Fatma Al-Remaihi

  • Hana Al-Saadi

  • Christto Sanz

  • Emelina Soares

  • Aisha Nasser Al Sowaidi

  • Andrew Weir

  • Samreen Zahra
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