The Sea Suspended
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Barjeel Art Foundation will curate an exhibition of Arab modern art at the Tehran Museum of Contemporary Art (TMoCA). This historic exhibition will mark the first time a show of Arab art from the modern period will take place in Iran. The exhibition will feature works by modern masters exclusively drawn from the Barjeel Art Foundation collection, and will represent a fifty-year period of works from the 1940s to the 1990s from around the Arab world, including Egypt, Iraq, North Africa, the Levant, and the Arabian Peninsula.
Following historically-minded exhibitions such as Imperfect Chronology at the Whitechapel Gallery, curated by Omar Kholeif, and The Short Century at the Sharjah Art Museum, curated by Karim Sultan and Suheyla Takesh of the Barjeel Art Foundation, this exhibition seeks to explore an important era of Arab art history which emerged in a period of intense social change.
The adoption of painting by artists across the region, paired with the rise of new nation states in the middle of the 20th Century, led many artists to vigorously search for new forms and styles that reflected new aspirations and identities, and works that dealt with the complexities of the emergence of modern life. Themes of the nation and the self, the village and the city, abstraction, language, and identity emerge and are explored through these works.