Shaika Al Mazrou’s site-specific airy molded sculptures look like inflated pillows that either lay flat or on their side, or stand seemingly precariously, occasionally wedged in the rocks. They create an act of unity or repair, balancing in tension and oozing a sense of comfort yet discomfort. They speak to the dichotomous relationship abound of stasis and movement, inhaling and exhaling, figuration, and abstraction. Through the distortion and alteration of conventional industrial metal sheets into misshapen forms, the work suggests the subjection of the media to a violent and perhaps irrational process.
This silent yet imposing composition and installation exhibits impossibly awkward balance amidst the naturally distorted formations of the rocks. The forms of these structures appear as if they are about to shrink and deflate. Their colors purposefully meld and mimic the environment albeit unnaturally. The insertion of the works in this landscape mirrors the voids and spaces and ultimately represents the spellbinding inertia of our surroundings.
Shaikha Al Mazrou (b. 1988, United Arab Emirates, based in Dubai) embarks on sculptural explorations which are expressions of materiality, articulations of tension and the interplay between form and content. They demonstrate an intuitive, keenly felt understanding of materials and their physical properties. She combines and evolves ideas from contemporary artistic movements, including color theory to geometric abstraction. A Professor of Visual Arts at New York University Abu Dhabi, Mazrou’s work has been shown in exhibitions across the globe. In 2018, Al Mazrou was awarded the first Artist’s Garden commission by the Jameel Arts Centre. She was one of five international artists commissioned to produce a public artwork at Al Jalila Cultural Centre for Children in Dubai (2014) and has participated in residency programs supported by the Delfina foundation (in collaboration with Tashkeel, Dubai) and the Dubai Culture and Arts Authority.
Measuring the Physicality of Void
AlUla, Saudi Arabia
Desert X AlUla 2022