Yuletide Yesteryears
December 19, 2019
Hopping around with Hopibi: It’s Christmas time in the city…
December 19, 2019

Christmas art on display

A group of artists from Oman, Finland and 12 other countries have come together for the Christmas Art Exhibition, organised for the first time in the sultanate, at the Matti Sirvio Art Galleria at Jawaharat al Shatti commercial complex in Qurm.

The month-long exhibition is the brainchild of Matti Sirvio, a Finnish artist in Muscat, who opened this art gallery a year ago to give budding as well as established artists in Oman a platform to showcase their work as well as inspire and learn from each other.

This exhibition, which was inaugurated on December 13 under the hospices of H E Abdulredha Mustafa Sultan, Honorary Consul of Finland, will continue till January 12, 2020. It is the third exhibition hosted by the gallery besides two other joint shows held during autumn and spring. A fourth exhibition will also be held during the summer of 2020 while artists will also be allowed to hold solo exhibitions in between, Sirvio told TheWeek.

“Cutting across nationalities and cultural/religious backgrounds, artists from different countries have come together for this joint exhibition to spread the message of Christmas together,” Sirvio said, adding, “Christmas is kind of a mystery and mystery goes well with contemporary or abstract art because there is so much room for interpretation.”

Various international artists in Oman sent in their work for this exhibition and Sirvio himself handpicked the best of paintings -and sculptures which either conformed to the Christmas theme or brought forth the message of peace and harmony. And as Sirvio himself observes, “The art scene in Oman has been developing and getting more dynamic over the past few years while the numbers of art collectors, too, has been growing steadily.”

Different strokes, common theme

Abbas Khalighi (Iran)

I am showcasing a sculpture named ‘Reaching’, which represents a man who has his heart in his head.

Dr Hafsa Banu (India)

This is the first time I’m exhibiting my abstract art. For me, art doesn’t have any religion, though art itself is a spiritual experience.

Soni Budhia (India)

I am exhibiting a sculpture which is an expression of my heart itself. The theme is celebration, something which brings joy and vibrance.

Harini Kumar (India)

My painting is a semi abstract, it is about mystery – a celebration in the mysterious woods which has a lot of movement and colour.

Elizabeth Davis (India)

I have moved from being a pure realistic artist to contemporary and abstract art and I’m loving it. In this exhibition we have concentrated on the Christmas theme in a semi-abstract manner.

Lucia Oliva (Italy)

The artworks I have presented in this exhibition are in some way inspired by Christmas, one of which represents the love of a mother which has a universal appeal in every country.

Nedal Smaik (Jordania)

I always paint but I never exhibit. This is the first time that two of my paintings will be on display. You will see the power and history of the Hajar mountains in my works.

Saleem Sakhi (Oman)

My two paintings have mixed media compositions which indicate how everyone is hanging onto various aspects all through their life.

Marcia Mallick (USA)

I have created my first painting specially for this exhibition. The message is ‘The Arrival’ and my painting is created in a reverse order as I have the habit of writing backwards.

Ye Hong Shen (China)

My painting shows the happy time people have during Christmas, and I have brought forth an Omani element in my depiction.