18 February, 2020 - 10 March, 2020

Greetings to Fernando Botero

Albareh Art Gallery is pleased to announce its participation in the Spring of Culture 2020 with Greetings to Fernando Botero, a solo exhibition of the works of Bahraini artist, Mohammed Al Mahdi. Greetings to Fernando Botero will open with a reception at 7 p.m. on Tuesday 18th, February, 2020 in Albareh Art Gallery. 

 

Artist Statement 

 

Greetings to Fernando Botero

 

My last tenure as a life drawing artist was in 2000. After which, I began the search for my identity through painting. I researched a lot of experiences and artistic trends. In 2005 I arrived at crossroads between the influence of artist Fernando Botero and that of the childhood-like art. I chose to focus on the later which I pursued. 

 

In this exhibition I try to go back in time to the teacher who appeared late. To Botero who found beauty in full bodies and the one who invaded the world with his huge sculptures. He showed me how to be an artist that stays true to his environment and to reflect his surrounding reality. I don’t mind to get out of the familiar or norm for a period of time just to satisfy his insistent desire. In one instant I mimic Botero’s style on my topics and in another I use his style of painting and subjects completely. Through this exhibition, I bid tribute of respect and appreciation for this artist’s great stature.

 

About the artist

 

Mohammed Al Mahdi was born in Bahrain in 1976; he lives and works in Bahrain. An artist and designer, 

 

The artist’s relationship to drawing and painting could not be more particular: As a child, he discovered charcoal in the streets and began to fill the wall of the neighborhood with his drawings and then he turned to color pencils, without knowing that after a serious accident he would spend a long time in bed with little company other than painting and drawing. Years later, as the artist began to search for his own personal style, he found the drawings from his childhood and decided to adopt this style as a story-telling device through which he would narrate a story of his own and then would venture into the world looking for everyday moments that acquire a dream-like appearance from which the gaze is never withdrawn.

 

Free from specific time and location, his paintings are an open creative reading of the visual world, and the stage of a clear gladness from which longing and memory are not exempt; the optical irreverence of consciousness is deployed in a suspended state.  One of the leading emerging practitioners in Bahrain, Mohammed Al Mahdi’s work has been exhibited in numerous solo and group exhibitions in Bahrain, Kuwait, Syria, Lebanon, Morocco, Saudi Arabia and Switzerland. One of his paintings, honoring the memory of a toddler disappeared mysteriously in Bahrain is showcased at Bahrain National Museum.