signed and titled 'Mohammed Kazem Acrylic on scratched paper' (on the reverse)
acrylic on scratched paper
7834 x 6014in. (200 x 153cm.)
Executed in 2021
Gallery Isabelle Van Den Eynde, Dubai.
Private Collection, UAE.
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Lot Essay

'Kazem wishes to capture the intangible and make it tangible. Sounds, light and movement are recreated in a way so that they are embodied and have composition and dimension… The series Scratches on Paper are meant to capture the movement of both light and sound and represent it in space.'
R. Fadda, Mohammed Kazem: Directions Toward Openness - National Pavilion of the UAE for the 55th International Art Exhibition – La Bienniale di Venezia, 2013, p. 19.

In this 2021 work, Acrylic on Scratched Paper, Dubai-based Emirati artist Kazem continues a well-documented series he started in 1989 and often returns to. This large scale, vividly coloured work, creates a textured colour-field, exploring light and sound through meditative creation. The works are created through repetitive scratching on paper with the edge of scissors, generating sculptural form on paper, where light and shadow create undulating waves across the surface, which when exposed to light, move throughout the day. Kazem summarises this particular series: ‘Over the years, this scratching practice has become fundamental in shaping how I experience the world by capturing light, sound and its infinite movement’.

Mohammed Kazem was born in the United Arab Emirates in 1969 and began experimenting with art making at school. At age 15, he was introduced to the late artist, Hassan Sharif, who invited him to work in his atelier and learn from both Sharif and other artists, creating a generation of contemporary artists in the United Arab Emirates, latterly known as The Five (Hassan Sharif, Hussain Sharif, Mohammed Kazem, Abdullah Al Saadi and Mohammed Ahmed Ibrahim). Kazem was awarded first prize at the Sharjah Biennial in 1999 and 2003. He represented the United Arab Emirates in a solo exhibition at the 55th Venice Biennale. He completed residencies from Seoul (Seoul Art Space, 2016) and India (Pepper House Residency, Kochi, 2016) to Honolulu (Shangri La: A Museum of Islamic Art, Culture and Design, 2017), and his work can be found in the collections of Solomon R Guggenheim, New York; Guggenheim, Abu Dhabi; Foundation Louis Vuitton, Paris and the British Museum, London, among others.

'His work may be seen as an attempt to recover his memories by observing and measuring temporal distances, listening to different sounds and coloring them, sniffing different odors and giving them form.'
H. Sharif, quoted in Hassan Sharif in R. Fadda, Mohammed Kazem: Directions Toward Openness -National Pavilion of the UAE for the 55th International Art Exhibition – La Bienniale di Venezia, 2013, p. 45.

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