Qahtan Alameen and the Marsoum Art Collective are excited to present the Toronto-based artist’s first virtual exhibition under the title of “Comfort In Chaos”. This series of new digital artworks were created in the midst of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. They deal with the topics of isolation and they layers of self-reflection that came with it. “Comfort In Chaos” launched on Saturday November 7, 2020 at marsoum.co .
The Inception of “Comfort In Chaos”
“I wanted to express what I was going through, what we were all going through, without adding more to the gravity of the situation” says Qahtan Alameen about this series. “I was full of conflicting emotions, it was a chaotic state of mind”, he recalls. What Qahtan embarked on was a journey of several weeks where he sourced random items, including the mannequin that recurs in many of the pieces, and sought out a comfortable haven in them, with him as the primary subject of the series.
In the statement that accompanies the series, Qahtan explains: “ I am trying to create a world in which random objects blend together. It is a reflection of my experience of this era, where strange worlds collide and the concept of time is of little or no meaning.”
Qahtan ended up with a collections of 25 photographs and digital artworks that transition from studio shots to outdoor ones, an allusion to the temporary loosening of restrictions from the first few months of the pandemic as we entered the summer and fall months.
Read Qahtan’s full statement in English and Arabic on the exhibition page.
Celebrating The Marsoum Art Collective’s Fifth Exhibition
Qahtan was one of the original six artists that made up the Marsoum Art Collective when it launched in late 2018. A solo exhibition featuring his work was always on the horizon, but the lockdown measures none of us saw being in place for this long accelerated that. Qahtan elaborates on this by saying: “It’s an incredibly difficult time for artists looking to exhibit their work right now. Social distancing has forced everyone to rethink the idea of online exhibitions and finding inventive ways of launching their art online”.
“Comfort In Chaos” is the Marsoum Art Collective’s fifth exhibition since we launched in the fall of 2018. Our first exhibition was the digital reincarnation of Visualizing Palestine and Marwan Rechmaoui’s A NATIONAL MONUMENT, which continues to run online and has generated over $5,000 in sales that have helped further Visualizing Palestine’s parent non-profit VISUALIZING IMPACT’s mission of raising awareness of human rights issues around the world, and particularly those that impact the Palestinian people.
Marsoum’s second exhibition was our first live one. It took place in the summer of 2019 in collaboration with Vancouver, Canada’s Monica Reyes Gallery and curated by Iranian-born Vancouver artist Hamidreza Jadid. The resulting group exhibition, Too Far, So Close was received to an overwhelmingly positive critical response. We collaborated with Monica Reyes Gallery (MRG) once again 2020 on Adel Bentounsi’s “In Between The Lines”, which was featured as part of MRG’s virtual booth at Montreal’s Papier Art Fair.
“Comfort In Chaos” builds on the success of Mohammed Afefa’s THE CAT PROJECT, which was the first exhibition powered by the Marsoum Art Collective to launch virtually. It was launched via live stream from Dar Al-Anda Art Gallery in Amman and was both a commercial and critical success.
In addition to a dedicated section on the marsoum.co website, “Comfort In Chaos” also includes a 3D virtual gallery walkthrough, making this specific exhibition a first of this interactive format for the Marsoum Art Collective.
About The Artist
About Qahtan Alameen: Alameen was born in Baghdad, Iraq. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Fine Arts from the University of Baghdad. He relocated to Canada in 2002 where he pursued further studies in photography and Graphic Design. He has extensive experience in traditional media and is also a proficient digital artist. Some of his works are featured in collections at the Art Center for Fine Arts in Baghdad, Iraq and the Canadian Immigration Art Center in Halifax, NS, Canada. He has spent time volunteering as a Fine Arts teacher with the United Nations Refugee Services, Jakarta, Indonesia, where he taught painting and drawing to refugee children.
Qahtan’s Full CV can be accessed here.
You can learn more about Qahtan by visiting his bio page.
Browse This Exhibition
If you haven’t already, be sure to check out the exhibition to look through the 3D gallery and to learn more about the story behind “Comfort In Chaos“
Written by: Abdulah S Al-Ghoul
Abdulah Al-Ghoul is a digital project manager and strategist with a background in several industries including hospitality, fine arts and marketing.
Abdulah founded the Marsoum Art Collective in 2018.