"Saudi Arabia Beyond Stereotyping and What Art Has To Do With It"
speech given by Sultan Albadran, Noorah kareem, Hawraa Almashhadi and Hussain Ismail at City Hall
Hi, Al Salam Alekoom. I am Sultan Albadran. i am from saudi Arabia. Yes i have a bank in my house. Yes, I have oil in my garden and when I go to school i go with no shoes..Yes, when I go to school i go with my camel, infect i have two camels in my garage! No, we don't have internet. and when we want to send a message we use a dove and we through it in the air go go..we also have old shoyook who buy football clubs every year, Chelsea, Manchester United….
Noorah Kareem (cutting Sultan Albadran off):
No!, I don't store oil in my back yard. and yes, oil is dirt cheep. yes, i do wear shoes when i go out. we also have Mcdonalds! yes it is hot. and No i don't own a camel. Yes, women can't drive. and maybe old Sheeks do buy football clubs every year!
Hi everyone! We are the team of Create and Inspire and we are the first expedition from Saudi Arabia to the UK. One of the first thing we did when we came to the Uk was walk around London and ask the pope what they thought of Saudi Arabia and to describe it in one word. those where some of the things they said. some where true some where miss informed information and some where just buzzer stereotyping.
Islam especially is one of the most stereotyped religions in the world. so we wanted to have a chance to talk to you about some of those stereotypes and what we can do to change them.
It always wires me what people might represent Islam. Yes, I am a Muslim and i do live in Saudi Arabia. I am proud of being a Muslim and it is my choose. while we were in on this trip we had the chance to meet with Vanisha Porter who is a creator working at the British Museum. she was working on putting up an exbaition on Hajj and as Anggi Makki from our team said " It was a slap on the face" especially since she was a non-Muslim with such little Arabic background if she was able to convoy such a positive message about Islam in such a negative media, then so can we!
talking more about islam and what Islam and Hajj means to us. Hajj is a pilgrimage a spiracle journey. It is held in Makkah witch is the holiest city in the Islamic world. We find that when we are in Makkah we feel really peaceful. Ahmad Zoweel who is a scientist proved that the Kaaba in Makkah city is in the center of earth and that it does hold positive energy. when we kneel down in prayer torrid the Kabba and our foreheads touch the ground all the negative energy we hold in our selves seeks down to earth.
one of our personal opinions on hajj is that it is almost like a performance that is held once every year by the people them selves.
Sultan Al Bidran:
So through art we can convoy a positive message about Islam. An example of a leading contemporary Saudi Arabian artist Ahmad Mateer. who has done a hole peace of art work about the Kabba by using magnetic energy.
A lot of people might think that we don't have old art in Saudi Arabia. Lawrence of Arabia came back from Saudi and told the people that Saudi Arabia has no art. he forgot to mention we did have art in the carvings and paintings pope did on the walls of their houses and Hinna tattoos for women. Canvases might be something we important from forgone countries but we did have art long before that. We had art on our hands, in our jewelry, our cloths, on daggers,and Islamic art that use geometrical shapes and used to decorate out homes and mosques with.
When we first came to the UK, we saw the difference between cultures, buildings and museums which made me think of Riyadh National Museum from which it doesn't have so many artworks and no international artworks are found there. Very few schools take their students to these museums. Riyadh National Museum is not even compared to the islamic section in the British Museum! When we talk about the British Museum, the variety of artworks there, various international works. It all make me wanna know more about other cultures. It also has children section and classes and they've taken in consideration handicapped and blind people.
I think we should really develop our museums because Saudi Arabia has a very rich history which we wanna know more about. And i think we are losing our heritage, we are starting to live in a jungle that is made out of cement, and we created a word for that issue which is "cementization".
One of the most creative industries we've visited in our journey is the Squint Opera, which is an art industry. We were amazed by how they made a 3D film about the future of Jeddah -a city in Saudi Arabia- without even visiting it. After we watched the film we were very influenced that we really wanted to see this future becoming real.
I think we should have a very deep imagination so we can do more than that and create amazing stuff and this is what we're trying to reach and spread.
I also think heritage is important .
coming to the UK and seeing how UK treat their culture differently then us. and not wanting to lose our culture because from it we take our art.
we don't have platform to show cost our work . art galleries are numbered though they might growing now. AHAR gallery is one of couple galleries that we have in Saudi Arabia . Abul Nasser Garram , one of Saudi comtoprary artist, didn't put his work on the walls but took it to the street.
we as youth tend to use a lot of YouTube , Fliker , facbook and other social network in order to publish our work. it has became our studio . those are our platform. in fact Saudi Arabia are the most upload video in YouTube. the youth in Saudi Arabia are estimated to be around 60% , which a massive number. how important important it is to help them became leaders and be able to have a role in Saudi Arabia.
as a young artist in Saudi Arabia all what consider me is being underestimated from society that doesn't understand the concept of art and how it a message. most of people I met look generally to any artwork's physical shape and appreciate what totally clear to them out of their point view with ignoring much deeper beauty of humen reflections by art.
what we want us and the next generation to do is take a detour. to affect to change some of the stereotypes about Islam and to bring out the truth. Abdullnasser al Garim and Ahmad Matter are an example of Saudi artist that started to take that detour. They have set the first stepping stones torrid that change. and from them edge of Arabia was born and from that Create and Inspire was born. Witch has now became our artistic plate form that through it we can speak to the world.
day 16 (last day)
Through out this journey I have had a lot of "Aha" moments. Personal and professional.
Looking around the common room and looking at the faces that have surrounded me for the past two weeks. Theo eating (always hungry lol) Anggi and Sultan playing table foot ball, Hussain and Ms T on on their laptops. Hesham and Hawraa in their rooms packing. I don't want this journey to end. We have already said goodbye to some members of our team Sarah, Adwa, Ahaa, Ajlan, and Aya.
I will miss everyone.
Things are getting quitter and I have four more hours before I have to wheel my bag out of Royal Hollowly and my journey to the UK that I have shared with more then 20 amazing creative individuals will be over. I'll go back home and life will go back to being fairly normal. Ms Stephen in my first interview with you back in Saudi Arabia before you guys pick the top 10 winners. I walked out of that interview and cried my eyes out. I knew wanted to be part of what you were offering to us Saudi young youth with our little talents and big dreams.Thank you. Thank you to everyone that made this possible for us. and inshalah we will make you all proud.
astawdi3akom fe 7ifth alllah
For the past couple days we have been working on the speech we were gonna give at City Hall ( I will be posting the speech in my next blog inshalah). At first it was a struggle thinking of what we wanted to say in our speech?? We understood what a great opportunity we had to speak in such an important place, in another country and amongst such important people. We just needed to think of "What Do We Want To Say To The World?"
the moment of truth:
in City Hall at 2:20 Mr.Steven started with his speech. I suddenly felt like i was gonna lose contains! man how embarrassing would that have been! al hamdolilah though during Abdulnassers speech I was able to pull my self together.and I think we did well with all our speechs! *pat on our backs*
around 3:30 and on the 9th floor we celebrated our journey!. People had good feed back. All in all it was a success day and a very successful trip.
it looks like its about to rain!
today i did 2 things, first go to Penguin Book Publisher witch is a masive secssesfull book publishing compeny. we got toget an inside look into three of their meetings. and then ask questions about their work. Bookes are evrywhere! deskes poeple working and colors everywhere!
illustrating books ispesialy childrens book is one of my goals. reading is very importent to islam. the first word that came down to the prophet from the quran was Iqraa" witch means "Read" but why have we lost this heratige?? we are our kids more into playing video games and arn't intrested in reading anymore?? i wana help bring reading back to the Saudias the arabs and the muslims. i dream of make our own Saudi book publishing compeny that is as sucssesful as Pengun book.
the secound thing we did was visite Tate Museum for Modren Art witch is really bit and really cool!, too bad i didnt have time to see the hole thing.
a noter great day. started off bygone to Leach pottery. we each made a thing. mines the giraffe -camel one!
then heeded to Minack Theatre and watched my first Shakespeare play "Hamlet" an open theater with the sun blazing down on us. i did enjoy it though. almost a three hour play. then we got teated for dinner to a nice restaurant for being good, yay!
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