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23
April, 2013
Art, Culture, Design, Kuwait 3:45 PM

Akim Monet: Seeking Al-Tawhid

The idea for Seeking Al-Tawhid came to me while thinking about the longstanding nonacceptance of depictions of humans and animals in Islamic art, and the resulting development of the Arabesque in which abstract geometry and stylized organic motifs are used to symbolize, within our manifest realm, that which is beyond manifestation.

I pondered about a possible connection between the invention of this visual language, which leads the eye back and forth between the second and third dimension, and the practice of photography, in which the representation of three-dimensional subject matter is rendered on a flat surface.

I discovered that the infinitely extensible designs in Islamic art, that are themselves made up of individual, self-replicating units have been interpreted as visual demonstrations of the singleness of God and his presence everywhere. They represent ‘unity in multiplicity’ and ‘multiplicity in unity.’

Technically the term for this ‘Oneness’ is Tawhid—a belief in God’s uncompromised unity and transcendence. The best-known expression of this Divine Unity is ‘La-ilaha-ill-Allah,’ (Quran 112:1): ‘There is no god but God.’

With these thoughts, I embarked on a journey that began in Andalusia, where in the words of British orientalist and archaeologist Stanley Lane-Poole, “Whatever makes a kingdom great, whatever tends to refinement and civilization was found in Moorish Spain.”

Colour is the first element that seduces in an Akim Monet photograph. Molten oranges, rich blues, lurid greens and purples that a Fauvist would envy, saturate the visual field. Then the sheer ornamented exuberance of his subject matter teases the eye with its baroque textures (…) Monet presents all this in reverse—that is, he prints directly what is on his negatives rather than inverting them into positive images. Doing this appeals to him both aesthetically and conceptually. First off, it’s how he’s able to achieve such an unexpectedly painterly and heightened palette. It’s also for him the most direct transfer of how the light of a particular place and moment burns into sensitised film. Looking at these photographs you do indeed viscerally sense the energy—the colours, smells, music—of his subjects.

While Monet had taken photographs in college and as a dealer documenting the installation of shows, it wasn’t until a trip to India in 1992 that the medium got under his skin. He was deeply affected by the power of the ancient temples and monuments that are still a vital part of daily life there, and used photography as a way of processing what he was feeling. Yet when he saw his pictures developed and printed, he was disappointed by their snapshot quality. He found looking at the negative strips, though, much more akin to his actual experience of the places and became obsessed with finding a way to print them as negatives. With no formal training in photography, Monet cobbled together a homemade process—with tools picked up along his travels—of re-photographing projections of the negatives, so the final print would match the original negative.

What the pictures share is an interest in duality that is underscored by the way Monet plays with idea of positive and negative in his printing technique.

Hilarie M. Sheets, The Space Between (excerpts), Infinite Point Press, New York, 2003 For more information, please visit seekingaltawhid.com

Life Center, 2nd floor (next to CAP)
Block 2, Street 28, Industrial Shuwaikh, Kuwait Saturday–Thursday, 11 am–8 pm

+965 2241 3488 info@jamm-art.org www.jamm-art.org 

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22
April, 2013
Entertainment, Food 10:32 AM

@LeSushiBar: Live Jazz Night!

Love sushi? Love jazz? Then you’re bound to enjoy a night of live jazz at Le Sushi Bar Al-Hamra Mall on Tuesday.

For reservations, call 22270300. See you all there! :)

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Extreme Sports
21
April, 2013

@YouthKuwait: Drawing Our Future

The Ministry of Youth Affairs proudly announces the commencement of a national logo competition, aimed at encouraging the local community to participate in the creation of the ministry’s artistic identity.

For more info, check out their website and the ad below. Take a chance and go for it!

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Follow them on Instagram and Twitter at @YouthKuwait

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20
April, 2013
Uncategorized 10:45 AM

Zone13 Expo

Join the exquisite expo on April 26, 2013! It will be held at Movenpick Freezone from 12 PM-10 PM. You don’t want to miss out on the professional break dancers, amazing car show with Classic and Sport engines, and the creative booths that will be participating with us. Hope to see all there!

Follow them on Instagram and Twitter for more updates! @Zone13_

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19
April, 2013
Entertainment 10:50 AM

The Hunger Games: Catching Fire

The Hunger Games: Catching Fire begins as Katniss Everdeen has returned home safe after winning the 74th Annual Hunger Games along with fellow tribute Peeta Mellark.   Winning means that they must turn around and leave their family and close friends, embarking on a “Victor’s Tour” of the districts.  Along the way Katniss senses that a rebellion is simmering, but the Capitol is still very much in control as President Snow prepares the 75th Annual Hunger Games (The Quarter Quell) – a competition that could change Panem forever. In theatres November 22nd, 2013. Who’s excited?!

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18
April, 2013
Food 11:02 AM

@Fauchon_Kuwait: Grand Avenue

This weekend me and a friend stopped by Fauchon for lunch at the Avenues branch in the Prestige.

Their Shrimp and Mango salad was so refreshing and the beef carpaccio was one of the best I’ve had in Kuwait!

Fauchon is known for the great desserts and the one we had did not let us down! The fondant with vanilla ice cream and mango salsa on the side all with a beautiful side of foamy cappuccino!

The food was excellent and the service was one of the best I’ve ever seen in Kuwait.

You can follow them on:
Instagram @fauchon_kuwait
Twitter @fauchon_kuwait
Facebook: Fauchon Kuwait 

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16
April, 2013
Education 10:31 AM

The Secret Powers of Time

Renowned psychologist Professor Philip Zimbardo explains how our individual perspectives of time affect our work, health and well-being.

I can’t find one incorrect point in this! What do you guys think? And how would you describe the pace of time in Kuwait compared to the rest of the world? (Sorry for making it sound like some sort of essay question, but I’m pretty curious!)

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