Bashar Al Shroogi
Edge of Arabia
Coinciding with Art Dubai in March 2011, Edge of Arabia presented its exhibition TERMINAL with a series of newly commissioned artworks by leading Saudi contemporary artists, curated by Bashar Al Shroogi, Director of Cuadro Fine Art Gallery.
In a highly conceptual and experiential exhibition, TERMINAL addressed the concept of travel, bureaucracy, privacy and identity. Creating a pop-up exhibition in an abandoned ground-floor space in the DIFC, the exhibition guided the viewer through a real-life airport experience, from check-in, through security, and on towards the globalised world.
I have kept a keen and close eye on Edge of Arabia since it first launched in London in 2008. It has come a long way since then both in terms of the development of the exhibition as a whole as well as the individual growth of artistic expression of the artists themselves.
When approached to curate EOA Dubai I was confident that the artists that formed this collective were ready to take the leap to a new level. EOA Terminal pushes curatorial boundaries in dialoguing with audiences via an experiential installation. It also marks a maturity in the relationship between artists and curators working within very tightly defined parameters. It is fantastic to see the artists of Saudi Arabia pioneering this curatorial relationship for the first time in the Gulf.