01 March, 2016 - 31 March, 2016

Other Homelands

Resmi Al Kafaji

Resmi Al Kafaji has always maintained that art has no national boundaries.  It is an expression of a personal journey - the artist’s own evolution. To Al Kafaji, art has to be relevant and engage the viewer either emotionally or intellectually, or both. 


At the heart of Other Homelands is Al Kafaji’s dual memory:  his memories of his years in his native Iraq that have sustained him through difficult periods; and his memories of his other home, Italy, in which he experienced a different kind of growth. Starting in 2007, Al Kafaji started to synthesize these two sets of memories into black and white watercolours, making a break with his brightly coloured oil paintings and their lyrical romanticism and harking back to his printmaking roots.


Other Homelands is a body of work through which Al Kafaji creates a new personal place that for years has existed only within him in the form of memories of two discrete homelands that have shaped him and consequently his art.  These large, gentle black and white works are an expression of a new space that he has created for himself.


Reshmi Al Kafaji was born in Diwaniya, Iraq.  In 1977, he moved to Florence, Italy, where he continues to reside. He graduated from Baghdad’s Institute of Fine Arts and then from Florence’s Accademia di Belle Arti.  His work was exhibited in Iraq until his departure in 1977.  Since then, he has been widely exhibited in Western Europe and more recently, the Middle East.