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Desert X AlUla 2024 has closed. This installation is no longer on view.

Faisal Samra

The Dot


“The present moment is born and then dies, and then born again, thus creating an endless cycle. As long as mankind exists in the physical world and beyond, if we are awake and conscious of that which is the beyond, then we are in an ‘Immortal Moment.’ However, if we capture any of those moments with an act or a gesture that leaves a trace, then that trace will certify that instant, which becomes an ‘Immortal Moment.’ This is the essence of all our acts that leave traces in the physical world, including artistic creation.”
Samra Faisal takes the “Immortal Moment” as his inspiration; each dot we draw is documentation of this moment in time. The line that our eye perceives in the physical world is nothing but an illusion: looking closely, a line is just an infinite number of very close dots. These dots create a trajectory that visually translates into a range. The dots are thus the essence of the image – the image of all existence.
According to RCU geologist Jan Freedman, the small valley where Samra’s artwork will be located was initially formed by a crack in a rock where water and air infiltrated inside and started carving, using the sand grain as a tool. In time, the rift widened and rockslides took place until this crack became the current small valley. This process can, after thousands of years, turn the rocks into desert sand. As a result, Samra sees the “Grain” of sand as an element of formation and destruction, the physical equivalent of The Dot, and his work represents the many moments, mysteries, and traces in the sand and stone of AlUla desert.