Ahmed Al Bahrani (sculptor)

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Ahmed Al Bahrani
أحمد البحراني
Born(1965-07-21)21 July 1965
Tuarej, (near Baghdad), Iraq
ResidenceIraq, Jordan, Qatar, Sweden
NationalityIraqi
EducationInstitute of Fine Arts (Baghdad)
OccupationSculptor, artist

Ahmed Al Bahrani, (Arabic: أحمد البحراني‎) (born 1965) is an Iraqi sculptor. Ahmed Al Bahrani is one of the most famous Iraqi sculptors, now living in exile.[1]

Life[edit]

Ahmed Al Bahrani was born in 1965, in Tuarej on the Euphrates River, near Babylon.[2] He recalls that as a child, he would withdraw from the games played by other boys, to model clay on the riverbank. He also recalls that on school trips, he was taken to see some of Iraq's ancient monuments and that his reaction to them was different to other boys.[3]

He studied sculpture at the Institute of Fine Arts in Baghdad and graduated from with a Diploma of Sculpture in 1988, [4] where he was influenced by many professors, notably Abdul Rahim Al Wakil.[5]

He has participated in several exhibitions, Inside and Outside Iraq, Sculpture in Iraq and Yemen as well as his participation in several exhibitions in Qatar, Beirut and the UAE. His sculpture is on public display in several cities.[6][7]

He taught at the Baghdad Institute of Fine Arts between 1992 and 1994.[4]

In mid-career, he decided to move away from the endlesss pursuit of abstraction and began producing figurative works. However, more recently he has returned to abstract sculpture.[5]

In 1994, he left Iraq for political reasons, and lived in Amman, Jordan for a number of years and later resided in Yemen.[5] Since 1999, he has divided his time between Doha in Qatar and Stockholm in Sweden. [8]

Work[edit]

Al Bahrani's work comprises large scale sculptures of political, religious and popular figures, often carrying various type of armaments.[9] Like many of his contemporaries who are living in exile,[10] Al Bahrani uses his work to express the sense that he is "estranged from his geographical foundation and his roots." [11]

The sculptor has designed a collection of statues, monuments and murals in Baghdad and cities of the world. His most notable works include:

  • Green ArtDubai.
  • Bisan Hall – Sponsored by the French Cultural Center – Qatar.
  • Al Bada Hall – National Council for Culture, Arts and Heritage – Qatar.
  • Al Fardan Gardens, sponsored by Alfardan Group – Qatar.
  • House of the French Ambassador – Qatar.
  • French Cultural Center – Sana'a.
  • Al Afif Hall – Sana'a.
  • The Challenge, bronze installation for the 24th Men's Handball World Championship, Lusail Multipurpose Hall, Doha, Qatar, 2015[12][13]
  • Gulf Cooperation Council Cup
  • Olympic Rings, Khalifa International Stadium, Doha, Qatar
  • Bayfront Park, Miami, Florida, Nine sculptures including Charlie Chaplin, Mother Theresa and Michael Jackson, 2014
  • Monument of Abu Tahsin al-Salhi[14]
  • Cube: A Message of Peace, 1.5m bronze, Hamad International Airport, Doha [15]
  • La Ferrari, bronze sculpture of the Ferrari motor vehicle, Lobby of St. Regis, Doha, 2016 [16]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Ahmed Al Bahrani," [Biographical Notes], Gary Nader Gallery, Online:
  2. ^ There is some confusion surrounding his place of birth. Some secondary sources, such as Bahrani, Z. and Shabout, N.M., Modernism and Iraq, Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Art Gallery and Columbia University, 2009, p. 92 state that he was born in Babylon, while other sources claim that he was born in Karbala; however in an interview, the sculptor explicitly stated that he was born in a small village, called Tuarej, near Babylon. See: "The Iraqi sculptor Ahmad Al-Bahrani told Asharq Al-Awsat: I am part of Qatari culture and am proud," [Interview - translated from Arabic], Al Sharq, 2 April, 2016, [1]
  3. ^ "The Iraqi sculptor Ahmad Al-Bahrani told Asharq Al-Awsat: I am part of Qatari culture and am proud," [Interview - translated from Arabic], Al Sharq, 2 April, 2016, [2]
  4. ^ a b Bahrani, Z. and Shabout, N.M., Modernism and Iraq, Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Art Gallery and Columbia University, 2009, p. 92
  5. ^ a b c Ayoub, D., "His latest works return to "Calila and Damna" Ahmed Bahrani: Arab sculptor restricted creativity," Emaratalyoum, [Dubai], 1 February, 2012, Online:
  6. ^ Alkahaki News, (translated from Arabic), [3]
  7. ^ "Exhibition - Ahmed Bahrani at "Art Basel Gallery" Miami version sculpts terrorists and in his hand to save life from misunderstanding" (translated from Arabic), Annahar [newspaper], Online:
  8. ^ "The Iraqi sculptor Ahmad Al-Bahrani told Asharq Al-Awsat: I am part of Qatari culture and am proud," [Interview - translated from Arabic], Al Sharq, 2 April, 2016, Nangiana, U., "Talking Sculptures," Gulf Times, 13 March, 2016, [http://www.gulf-times.com/story/484374/Talking-sculptures Online:
  9. ^ "Ahmed Al- Bahrani," Wall Street Journal Magazine, 27 December, 2013, Online:
  10. ^ The Ministry of Culture has estimated that more than 80 percent of all Iraqi artists are now living in exile,; See: Art AsiaPacific Almanac, Volume 4, Art AsiaPacific, 2009, p. 75
  11. ^ Nangiana, U., "Talking Sculptures," Gulf Times, 13 March, 2016, Online:
  12. ^ http://www.qm.org.qa/en/blog/challenge-and-other-public-art
  13. ^ "The 2017 World Handball Championship is designed and manufactured by Ahmad Bahrani," Reyada News, 27 January, 2017 Online:
  14. ^ "Government of Basra commissioned the sculptor Ahmad Bahrani to erect a monument commemorating (Ain Falcon)," Almirbad, 18 October, 2017, Online:
  15. ^ Doha Hammad Airport, Online:
  16. ^ Barker, M., "The Right Profile," Ferrari Magazine, 20 October, 2016 Online: