PARALLEL KINGDOM: CONTEMPORARY SAUDI ART IN HOUSTON

Station Museum of Contemporary Art, Houston, TX، USA

18 Jun - 10 Oct 2016

PART OF BRIDGES 2016 - 2017: AN ITHRA INITIATIVE

 

The Station Museum of Contemporary Art presented the major exhibition Parallel Kingdom: Contemporary Art from Saudi Arabia, a cross-generational survey of contemporary art from the Saudi Arabian peninsula. This exhibition provided insights into Saudi culture through the creativity and vision of some of the most influential Saudi artists of the 21st century, alongside younger voices from the fields of art, comedy, and film.

In cooperation with King Abdulaziz Center for World Culture, the Station Museum team has assisted in organizing an exhibition that explores the complex issues faced by the new generation in Saudi Arabia, challenging the broadcast of hyperbole and contradictions which have sculpted the narrative of the Saudi Kingdom internationally. Moreover, questioning western perceptions of Saudi society. What do we ‘really’ know about the Kingdom and the people that live there? Through this exhibition, we hope to have open dialogue and further understanding between the two cultures.

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Much of our collective knowledge of Saudi Arabia comes through a mediated lens of politics, conflict, and religion. For decades the kingdom has been linked to the U.S. and the West, through economics and politics. The boundaries of internal Saudi development have constantly evolved, and recently, efforts have been accelerated to reflect Arab progress socially and economically, while challenging Western concepts of Saudi’s cultural history.

The parallel Kingdom seeks to use a visual language and the first-hand accounts of Saudi artists, to lay a new foundation for discourse and understanding of Saudi society, culture, and politics.

The Parallel Kingdom marks the launch of a multi-city tour of the United States to generate people-to-people dialogue and better understanding between Saudi Arabia and the United States. The tour launched in Houston, one of the most important cities in America for art, education and cultural innovation.

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