Fabric of Memory, which has been curated by visual artist, also of Palestinian origin, Hazem Harb, draws together a selection of works by Mohammed Joha that spans paint, collage, and installation to tackle the themes of displacement, cultural malaise, dystopia, and identity that have arisen from the Palestine-Israel conflict. Through an immersive environment and the insider’s gaze of the artist the exhibit aims to shine a light on the lesser known realities of Gaza.
Joha’s works are concerned with the Palestine of now, highlighting the limiting conditions enforced upon those that were displaced. On first impression his surrealist paintings are playful and vibrant, yet they relay deep rooted messages of despair and destruction linked to current media portrayal and the hardships of war. In addition to Joha’s paintings Harb has also selected a collection of collages to be displayed.
Fabric of Memory will be presented in Tabari Artspace’s DIFC gallery, however, Harb is set to transform the space into an environment that expands our understanding of the exhibit and the migrant experience. Alongside the selected artworks by Joha, Harb has created an immersive installation designed to create the sense of claustrophobia and chaos experienced by the Palestinians who were driven into life as refugees, stripped of their homes, belongings, and social identities at once.
“Gaza has become a space that has no routine at all: when it's war, it's difficult to call it war, and living repeatedly through such radical transformation makes it almost impossible to cope, every time again, with a profoundly altered geography.
The course of the streets, the shape of the houses, everything is different now. Here was a street surrounding a public park, and there was a hotel next to a tower, and an apartment building hosting a grocery store on its ground floor. Everything has changed!”
- Mohammed Joha