Art with Purpose – Where Icons of the Modern & Natural World Intersect
Dates: 2 to 31 March
Location: Jumeirah Mina A’Salam Hotel, Madinat Jumeirah, Dubai
I am honored to launch my Art with Purpose collection of wildife Fine Art photographic works for the first time in the UAE with Dubai art icon, Neel Shukla.
The exhibition is currently being held at Neel’s new ‘FOUR’ gallery at the prestigious Jumeirah Mina A’ Salam hotel until 31 March.
Neel and his Team have skillfully curated the exhibition, which features 20 of my best-known and most recent works. The launch on the 2nd March was attended by over 80 well known personalities, as well as some great friends locally based in Dubai.
I would like to thank everyone for the incredibly warm and enthusiastic reception, not only to the works themselves, but also to Monique and I.
Like any other artist, I am the first to admit one of my aims is to sell my works and to this end, it was flattering and humbling to have had so many works sold on the opening night.
This objective, despite its altruistic goals, is superseded by the importance to have a purpose to my art by sharing the narrative that comes from a long time spent at a very important and privileged position, and that is at the coalface of ecological change.
Whilst it seems paradoxical that I am showcasing wildlife fine art in a setting such as Dubai, I feel a strong synergy in so much as the works celebrate and pay homage to the biggest, fastest and most spectacular of our Planet’s natural icons. Dubai is where we celebrate the most grand of our own species’ achievements with landmarks such as The Burj Khalifa, The Burj Al Arab and Atlantis The Royal, all within eyeshot of the gallery.
More importantly, despite the huge divide between the two, both are intrinsically interlinked. Nature and the wild icons are obliviously dependent on the decisions we make in the immediate future.
By the same virtue, the consequences of our decisions impacting the myriad of complex natural ecosystems they live in, will ultimately determine our future.
With the above in mind, I feel it fitting that the exhibition should see the launch of our collection known as ‘Sentient’.
This body of work celebrates the two largest creatures from their respective realms on our Planet, the oceans’ great whales and the earth’s elephants.
Both of these incredibly capable, powerful and huge animals epitomize the essence of Sentience in so much as their ability to live consciously aware of their kind, have deep emotional bonds with their families, and a deep sensitivity and perceptiveness to emotion and feeling.
The works for the first time have a color theme with a palette of gently washed out hues complimented by a shallow depth of field, which elevates the artistic element by virtue of soft mood and composition.
It is indeed both an honor and a privilege to do what I do for a living, and it is my duty to celebrate our Planet’s icons both visually and by narrative to ensure their posterity.
As such a huge thank you to so many people in Dubai who have given me this opportunity and made Monique and I feel so welcome. I would particularly like to thank Neel Shukla and his Team, Michael Markland for his ongoing support, and the welcoming team at the Mina A’ Salam Hotel.
The Exhibition will be held at ‘Four’ gallery in Dubai’s Jumeirah Mina A’ Salam Hotel, until the end of March 2023.