DUBAI.- Ayyam Gallery
, Dubai presents In Army We Trust an exhibition featuring recent canvases by Syrian painter Thaier Helal. Known for his large mixed media canvases that perpetually demonstrate the evolution of his artistic style, the artist presents an entire new body of work incorporating photographs of the Syrian military forces originally taken by the media. Helals photographs are re-staged and enlarged in ways that provoke a direct - physical encounter with the images. The works presented have a shared quality under which is heavy and deeply meaningful, which only immerse the viewer even deeper in his thoughts.
Over the last decade, the ongoing political turbulence, military conflicts within the Middle East and their uneasy aftermath have impacted on a generation of contemporary artists which led Helal to consequently explore such a theme as the Armys role in todays society. His work is arguably cerebral, concentrating on issues of power, expression and liberation. Through these works of art, he therefore reflects and reveals that which is integral to the Armys foundation, mythology and daily functioning.
Born in Syria in 1967, the distinguished artist has become a significant member of the Arab and Gulf Art scene since moving to the United Arab Emirates in the 1990s. A senior faculty member of the University of Sharjah, Fine Arts College, he has participated in prominent exhibitions and events throughout the region, including the Sharjah, Alexandria and Tehran Biennials and Christie's and Bonhams auctions.
A graduate of the Faculty of Fine Arts in Damascus, his prominence is confirmed by the countless honors that have been bestowed upon him, such as the Al Burda International Award from the Emirati Ministry of Culture, Youth and Community Development (2008), the Grand Gold Award at the Tehran International Biennial (2005), the Award for Painting at the Sharjah International Biennial (1997) and the Distinguished Works Award at the 15th General Exhibition of the UAE Fine Arts Association (1996). Yet Helal's long exhibition history is not limited to the Middle East, as he has been featured in international art fairs, biennials and exhibitions throughout Asia and Europe.