The Top Contemporary Artists In Qatar You Should Know

Photo of Mary-Anne Farah
23 December 2016

Qatar has a wealth of culture and beauty, and many artists willing and eager to capture that beauty. So here is Culture Trip’s top five contemporary artists in Qatar.

Fashion Show | © mandiberg/WikiCommons

Wadha Al Suleati

Wadha Al Suleati specializes in fashion design and visual artistry, so she is quite different from the other artists featured on this list. Wadha is one of Qatar’s most popular artists, and her work is featured in joint and private exhibitions in Qatar as well as abroad. On top of being an artist herself, she also helps coordinate artistic projects, so she is a key figure in Qatar’s art world. Some of Wadha’s fashion designs have been featured in international fashion shows and have become very popular over the years. She also founded the Al-Roshana Gallery in Doha.

Movement | © mark sebastian/WikiCommons

Faraj Daham

Faraj Daham’s work is intricately connected with the movement of organic bodies. As such, his work has a truly fascinating and approachable quality to it. His pieces, particularly his paintings and sketches, are characterized by their complexity and enormous levels of activity. His work is incredibly active and reactive, and every viewer will take away something different from this subjective viewing experience. Faraj considers his method, generally, to be keen observation. His ability to observe, soak in, and reconstruct human action into something artistically resonant is astounding.

Telephone number: +946 55514924

Arabic Calligraphy | © Unknown Calligrapher/WikiCommons

Yousef Ahmed

Yousef Ahmed is described as a pioneer of the modern art movement and is one of Qatar’s most prevalent artists. In 1976 he began working for the Ministry of Information as the Head of Art and Exhibitions. This role involved supporting and promoting other Qatari artists. Later, in 1979, he completed a masters in painting in the United States. Yousef’s own artistic work is inspired by his fascination with calligraphy and the Arabic script. While developing his own unique style, he discovered the art of printmaking techniques, which included silkscreen and etching. Qatar itself is etched into his paintings, as he was inspired by the flat desert landscape of his home. He used collages of colors, mixed-media works and textures to express his feelings about Qatar.

Telephone number: +974 44081255

Colours | © Roberto Verzo/Flickr

Ali Hassan Jaber

Ali Hassan Jaber began his journey into art at a very young age, while he was still in primary school where he discovered a passion for calligraphy. In the 1970s he pursued this passion by becoming a volunteer calligrapher for one of Qatar’s first national newspapers, Jaridat al-Arab. Like Yousef Ahmed, he spent time after university honing his artistic skill by learning printmaking, as well as taking on a course in restoration in Egypt and Belgium. He later experimented with what he had learned and initially began with producing pieces that focused on black and white Arabic calligraphy. However, he has experimented with vibrant and luminous colors over the last fifteen years while focusing on the Arabic letter ‘N’. For Ali Hassan Jaber, focusing on one letter alone exhibits the artistic power of calligraphy, proving that one letter can yield wonderful art.

Wafika Sultan Al-Essa

Wafika Sultan Al-Essa was one of the first women in Qatar to study art and then turn it into a profession. For female artists in Qatar, Wafika remains a true inspiration. Initially, she was a professional interior designer. This experience with interior design has contributed massively to her work as an artist and continues to influence her pieces. Wafika has a great passion for color and actively tries to incorporate the complexities of calligraphy, color, and form in her work. This attention to detail makes for miraculous pieces of art.

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