Fatma AlSharshani is a calligraphy/calligraffiti artist whose strength lies in the Arabic calligraphy she so beautifully puts together on canvas and the walls around Qatar. She is part of JEDARIART, an annual Qatar Museums programme that adds vibrancy and meaning to the different places in the city. This programme brings together artists through murals with the goal to encourage the community to reflect on social, historical, and cultural issues.
This year Fatma travelled with JEDARIART to Portland, Oregon in the USA, and in partnership with the Portland Street Art Alliance painted a new mural she called 'The Never Ending' or 'Endless You' expressing infinity and continuity, on a building wall located at 636 SE 10th Ave.
The ILoveQatar.net (ILQ) team brings you an exclusive Q&A with Fatma who apart from being a calligraphy artist and the owner of a company called 'Qaif Calligraphy' that provides calligraphy services in Qatar, is a Chemistry and Food Science graduate working with Total Energies in Doha.
Fatma: Since I was young, I have had a deep liking for Arabic calligraphy. I have been always in love with the Arabic language and especially Arabic poetry. And, the more I learnt about it, the more deeply I fell in love with it and this is how it turned into my passion.
Fatma: I use all types of art mediums. Paper and ink are my favourites.
Fatma: Poetry, nature and sometimes discussions.
Fatma: It depends; sometimes I get offers (commissions) and sometimes, it's based on feelings or even world events.
Fatma: Qaif, which means 'how?' in Arabic, is a company I created that specialises in offering calligraphy services in Arabic, fine arts and conceptual arts.
Fatma: I started out with JEDARIART last year in 2020. My first mural was called the 'Al Noor', which is at the Qatar Post Park.
Fatma: I painted the “Endless You”. It is my favourite mural to date for the simple fact that it exposed the beauty of the Arabic language/calligraphy to a part of a world that is not very familiar with the language. I often get messaged to this date, on social media, by people tagging me saying how much they love my mural in Portland and how unique it is to them; it warms my heart every time.
Fatma: You get to know the culture of the country from its street art.
Fatma: My artwork and its simplicity.
Fatma: Travelling to the US to represent the art scene of my country, Qatar is something that I am very proud of.
Fatma: I always stayed focused on my goals and target. It took me a lot of hard work to reach where I am today.
Fatma: We can’t avoid mistakes, but I learnt from them.
Fatma: I wouldn't change anything. I’ll do it all the same way.
Fatma: I am a horse rider and I love home-cooked meals.
Fatma: I like taking care of my plants, exploring new ways to draw, and going out with my close friends.
Fatma: Believe in yourself and listen to others.
Sources: Qatar Museums; Qaif
Cover image provided by Fatma AlSharshani
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