Ola Alhaj Hasan
Dar El Nimer for Arts and Culture inaugurated its exhibition under the title of “Keyword: Palestine” on Thursday Feb.1. The exhibition is held in collaboration with and in support of the Institute for Palestine Studies (IPS). The displayed artworks are all donated by Palestinian and Arab artists, and they will be sold in an auction to raise funds for the Institute.
The exhibition remarkably joins artworks ranging from classical to contemporary, all of which will be under silent auction for as long as the exhibition is running, until Feb. 28. Then, a public auction will take place on March 2, during a fundraising dinner organized by IPS.
In an interview with Outlook, Dar El Nimer’s Executive Manager Rasha Salah asserted that the institute’s fundraising initiative was met with great enthusiasm both from the team at Dar El Nimer and from all the artists who were contacted.
The exhibition joins more than seventy artworks of paintings and sculptures, a number which exceeded initial expectations, according to Salah.
“We were hoping for twenty, thirty, or forty works, but we ended up with seventy, and we still had artists calling in and wishing to donate their work,” said Salah.
Also exceeding expectation was the fact that participating artists were not just Palestinian.
“We also had artists of different nationalities such as Lebanese, Syrian, Egyptian, Iraqi, Iranian, and French”, added Salah.
In his opening remarks, IPS’s Chairman of the Board of Trustees, Tarek Mitri, described the event as the first of its kind. Mitri sees that such collaboration between the Institute and Dar El Nimer acts as a link between research and artistic expression.
Mitri’s speech was followed by that of Dar El Nimer’s Founder, Rami El Nimer. The exhibition, as Nimer sees it, is a reassurance that Palestine is never a secondary subject. Nimer expresses his pride in the artists’ willingness to support the Institute of Palestine Studies.
In terms of participation and audience, Nimer finds that the exhibition affirms the reputation of the Institute for Palestine Studies as a respectable and influential entity that is highly regarded by artists and intellectuals.