Hashel Al Lamki, 08 Mar 2022 — 01 May 2022
Born in the shadow of the monumental Jebel Hafeet mountain in Al Ain, Al Lamki came of age during a moment of flux. Al Ain’s bedouin traditions, particular social values, archaeological sites and rugged terrain formed a stark contrast to the rapid industrial and architectural growth that Al Lamki observed during visits to the neighbouring Emirates and the complex social and spatial dynamics that arose from this exponential development.
This latest body of process-driven work explores these themes. Central to this work is the process. Transcending the notion of making work ‘on’ the landscape, Al Lamki works within the landscape, absorbing his materials and processes from the environment which surrounds him. In his youth he was inspired by the craftmanship and dying process of the local artisans from the Bedouin community that surrounded him in Al Ain. Al Lamki was particularly fascinated by their use of natural pigments, sourced from the surrounding land in order to establish natural colours to transform their creations. Al Lamki refuses the separation of man and nature, his practice underscores the dependency of mankind on natural resources and their subsequent responsibility for the environmental catastrophe that looms. His approach to art fuses social innovation, sustainability and environmental consciousness. Inspired by scientific methodologies and local artisanal processes, Al Lamki’s palette comprises freshly formed pigments derived from natural resources in the MENA region. Through this process of alchemy, Al Lamki articulates the fragility and scarcity of these elements as well as their immense natural powers.
The sentiments of Edward T. Hall have informed both Al Lamki’s approach to art and his perspectives: ‘The relationship between man and the cultural dimension is one in which both man and his environment participate in moulding each other.’