Dubai: Artworks on Syria’s history and diversity on show — Gulf News com

Dubai: Artefacts and artworks depicting Syria’s history in the ‘And the Conversation Continues, Syria: A Living History From the Atassi Collection,’ art exhibition were on display in the Ismaili Centre Dubai.

The exhibition marks the fourth year of partnership between Art Dubai, The Aga Khan Museum, the Consulate General of Canada in Dubai and the Ismaili Centre Dubai.

Elias Zayat is being greeted by Aziz Merchant Vice President of the Ismaili Community in the UAE


Travelling from Canada, artist Elias Zayat displayed his work titled ‘Deluge — The gods abandon Palmyra,’ together with its 13 case studies at the exhibition. The mural, which is 375cm tall, is a depiction of the Mesopotamian tale of Gilgamesh, which the artist has located in Palmyra as a way to link Syria’s past, present and future. Palmyra is both an ancient city and a symbol of resistance in Syria’s current circumstances. The artist was present signing his recently launched monograph after the event.

“The importance of Syria’s contribution to world heritage has never been in doubt. Despite the destruction that has taken place in conflict zones, the spirit of the Syrian past can and will be restored, led by organisations such as Unesco and the Aga Khan Trust for Culture which have played prominent roles in the restoration of monuments in Syria prior to the war,” said Henry Kim, director and CEO of the Aga Khan Museum, Toronto.

Atassi Foundation’s discussion with the Aga Khan Museum started in March 2016 during the preparation for ‘Syria: A Living History’ exhibition in Toronto, which was a collaboration between seven international museums and private collections that brought artefacts and artworks that tell a different story — one of cultural diversity, historical continuity, resourcefulness, and resilience.


“This wonderful exhibition is a true testament to the magic of Syrian civilisations, to its culture, to its history, to its nobility and, of course, to its national pride. For the Big Heart Foundation, this is more than an outstanding tribute to the people of Syria, it is an opportunity for visitors to see what we do and the part we play in alleviating some of their suffering and we thank you for that,” said Mariam Al Hammadi, director of the Big Heart Foundation

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