Traces is a new exhibition in Ramallah featuring the work of over 40 Palestinian artists living and working in the Gaza Strip, will open at the PADICO HOLDING Art Gallery, on May 10th 2014. A collaborative venture between PADICO HOLDING, Artist Pension Trust (APT), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Institut Français in Jerusalem, Traces aims to both promote the work of artists living in the Gaza strip to an international audience and to support them.
The aspiration of Traces is to allow artists to explore concepts related to memory, evidence, remains and reminders and to consider the importance of documentation and its impact on the present cultural condition in Palestine. Moti Shniberg, co-founder and Chairman of APT, an international organization providing long- term financial security and international exposure to contemporary artists worldwide, commented on APT’s intentions with this exhibition: “We are extremely eager to work with Palestinian artists and to provide them with the platform they need to increase the awareness and the recognition of their work in the international art community and beyond. We believe further that the APT model is a great solution for the artists to advance their careers and establish their future financial security.” APT’s international Curatorial Team consists of over 100 leading art professionals with experience in identifying artists with the highest potential of success and in supporting these artists through the early and mid-stages of their careers.
Samir Hulileh, CEO of PADICO HOLDING/Ramallah, noted: “As a company we have an immense feeling of obligation to support Palestinian Artists in Gaza as to elevate the benchmarks of cultural and artistic sense in the country, and to raise the exposure of artists as well as the platform of which they can utilize to engage with the international community. I believe that this is just the beginning of many artistic initiatives between the Company and other relevant stakeholders.” Corporate Social Responsibility is considered an integral element of PADICO HOLDING’s corporate citizenship and commitment to the society and its development in numerous aspects including the growth and development of the Palestinian Cultural sector.
Frode Mauring, UNDP Special Representative of the Administrator highlighted that the UNDP views culture as a central pillar of development: “UNDP’s programme of Assistance to the Palestinian People has been organizing an annual art auction and exhibit since 2001, selling over 250 paintings, and raising approximately USD 200,000 that went directly to the artists,” said Mr. Mauring. “This exhibit is no different as it signifies UNDP’s commitment and interest in furthering arts and cultural cooperation. The participating artists from Gaza are a real testament to the resilience of the human spirit and the indomitable will to overcome challenges and rebuild shattered lives.”
Yasmin Sharabi, a Palestinian American artist and curator based in Bahrain, was selected to curate Traces based on her experience, background and knowledge of both the international art scene and contemporary practice in the region. She curated numerous exhibitions in Bahrain and abroad, and is currently Manager of ‘The Harbour Project’ an art space in Bahrain dedicated to supporting and nurturing emerging talent in the region. “I am extremely pleased to have been given the opportunity to work on an exhibition that not only supports a group of talented artists but that also supports the art scene in Palestine in general. A recent trip to Palestine helped me determine the concept for Traces, as it allowed me to gage the art and cultural scene, recognizing that there is a need to not only expose the talent which is somewhat less apparent to the wider world, but also to give artists the opportunity to consider a theme that is relevant to their current condition,” said Ms. Sharabi.