Oman's creative landscape has been blossoming in recent years, with a surge of talented individuals pushing boundaries and captivating audiences with their unique perspectives. As we step into 2023, it's an opportune time to shine a spotlight on ten Omani creatives who are making waves across various artistic disciplines. From visual artists to musicians, photographers , and more, these individuals are injecting fresh energy into the cultural fabric of Oman and deserve recognition for their exceptional talents and contributions. Get ready to explore the dynamic and diverse world of Omani creativity.
Tumi AKA DJ Don't Touch My Hair
Novemburus, an Omani fashion photographer who transitioned into a model, has adopted the stage name DJ Don't Touch My Hair. Recognized as a prominent figure in the fashion and music scenes of the Middle East region, she has established her reputation through unforgettable parties and events.
Beyond her influence as a style icon, Novemburus is particularly celebrated for her ability to captivate and energize audiences with music that rekindles their forgotten love for certain genres. Her carefully curated mixes encompass a blend of contemporary hits, skillfully intertwined with R&B, Hip Hop, Afro Beats, and a hint of nostalgia through throwbacks to popular songs from the 80s to the 2000s.
Ali AlJabri, born in 1980, spent his formative years in Sohar, surrounded by a milieu steeped in science and literature. At a young age, he discovered his inclination towards sculpture through playful interactions with clay, an early experience that profoundly shaped his artistic journey. Following his formal education in art, AlJabri embarked on a period of exploration, experimenting with various mediums and techniques. However, it was his encounter with marble that ignited his passion, leading him to exclusively focus on this medium since 2012.
AlJabri's talent and dedication have garnered recognition in the art world. He received the prestigious Iktissaa prize at the First Gulf Festival for Visual Arts in Riyadh in 2013, as well as the grand prize in the Annual Exhibition of Plastic Arts, organized by The Omani Society for Fine Arts in 2012. His works have been showcased in both solo and group exhibitions across multiple countries, including Bahrain, France, Jordan, Monaco, Morocco, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Spain, Tunisia, the UAE, and others. Beyond his artistic practice, AlJabri actively contributes to research studies in the field of plastic arts and takes initiatives to establish programs and events aimed at enriching this domain of research and practice.
Mays Al Moosawi, a visual artist hailing from Muscat, Oman, pursued her artistic aspirations and defied the predetermined expectations placed upon her. After Graduating with a BA in Illustration from Coventry, UK, May's transformed her passion into a full-time profession as an artist. Her distinctive artistic style revolves around portraying the female figure, inspired by her personal observations of women in her society and beyond. Mays' identity was shaped by the narratives, vulnerabilities, and obstacles faced by women within her community.
Adam Nabeel, an Omani artist, and producer, emerged onto the music scene in 2018 with his inaugural EP titled "Downtime." His distinct musical style traverses Afrofusion, Arabic sounds, and R&B, leaving a lasting impact on listeners. Having resided in the UK, LA, and Dubai, Adam strives to showcase and illuminate the talents of Omani creatives.
Through dedicated practice and honing his skills in singing, songwriting, and production, Adam Nabeel collaborated with Dubai-based producer "AY The Producer" to elevate his music to new heights. This collaboration resulted in the release of his debut project, "Downtime." Over the years, Adam has continued to evolve as an artist, consistently representing the region and delivering remarkable music through various projects.
Every now and then, the universe aligns to bring forth an imaginative dreamer, and we take great pride in introducing this Omani illustrator, renowned for his extraordinary interpretation of whimsical and fantastical characters reminiscent of those found in Disney films. Mimoon, with his seamless artistry, crafts original characters that exude a sense of playfulness and otherworldliness. Born in Oman and working as a lawyer by day, Mimoon's focus on creating concepts brimming with depth and dimension is executed flawlessly through his distinctive strokes and captivating color palettes. His quick-witted and spontaneous personality adds to his mastery of storytelling.
Throughout his upbringing, Mimoon always felt like an outsider, a rare being descended from distant galaxies, and his imagination knew no bounds. He found joy in watching cartoons and sketching his own renditions of the characters. As time went on, he continued to refine his skills and brought his animated creatures to life using watercolors and digital mediums. His artwork reflects his personal struggles and touches upon relatable themes such as self-care and self-reflection.
Today, Mimoon has become an influential figure in the local art community. He has been featured in various publications and even appeared on Oman TV. In addition, he runs a weekly art club for enthusiasts and is currently working on publishing his own art book. In his free time, you might find him engrossed in one of his twelve sketchbooks (and counting), filled with awe-inspiring pencil illustrations. They serve as a testament to his unparalleled talent, and I hope that one day you'll have the opportunity to witness them firsthand.
Muayad, the exceptional digital artist, continues to astound the masses with his awe-inspiring creations. As a master of photo manipulation, he effortlessly claims the top spot among the best digital artists in town. His vivid and surreal concepts, born from a vibrant imagination, have garnered widespread acclaim, including recognition from the Ministry of Tourism.
Having graduated from the Higher College of Technology with a degree in Photography, Muayad embarked on a relentless artistic journey, dedicating himself to perfecting his skills using Photoshop. His progress knew no bounds. What sets his work apart is the seamless fusion of genres in both his photography and digital art, a fact vividly evident in recent billboard campaigns featuring his captivating pieces.
Much of Muayad's art revolves around dreamlike aesthetics and high-concept depictions that beautifully capture the essence of the culture. One of his standout creations, an artwork paying tribute to the late Sultan Qaboos bin Said, gained viral recognition for its impeccable artistry and captivating color palette. Additionally, his work for the esteemed telecom giant, Omantel, received critical acclaim. Furthermore, his powerful expression of love for his hometown of Sur, titled "Safinat Fath Al Kheir," left a lasting impact.
Most recently, Muayad's latest project, "Sahwa," inspired by an iconic landmark, showcases his remarkable talent and ability to create visually stunning compositions. Each of Muayad's creations is a testament to his artistic prowess and his ability to capture the imagination of viewers with his distinctive style.
Placing her native country at the core of her artistic endeavors, the artist seamlessly weaves elements of Omani heritage, such as artifacts and coins, into her captivating work. Her artistic journey has taken her across the globe, exhibiting her pieces in prestigious locations ranging from Paris to Seoul. Furthermore, she has established her own gallery, bearing her name, which serves as a platform to promote and showcase the talent of emerging local artists. Through her gallery, she actively contributes to the growth and recognition of the local art scene, nurturing the artistic aspirations of fellow creatives.
Susan Al Said, a visionary in the art world, is the driving force behind Oman's inaugural art gallery, Bait Muzna. This groundbreaking establishment has served as a launching pad for numerous Omani artists, providing them with a platform to showcase their creations through in-house exhibitions as well as participation in international art fairs. Bait Muzna has played a pivotal role in fostering the growth and recognition of Omani art and artists.
In addition to the art gallery, Susan Al Said's dedication to the arts extends to the Bait Muzna for Art Film institution. This institution is committed to nurturing local and regional filmmakers, as well as exploring innovative developments in media, photography, and art film.
By supporting and showcasing the works of filmmakers and artists, Bait Muzna for Art Film contributes to the flourishing creative landscape in Oman and beyond, enriching the cultural scene and encouraging the exploration of new artistic frontiers.
Eman Ali, a photographer, and visual artist, delves into profound explorations of religious, socio-political, and consumerist ideologies within the realm of desire and the dynamics of gender performance in the Gulf region. With a base between London and Oman, Ali's artistic endeavors provide insightful perspectives on the lived experiences of women in contemporary Arab society.
Through her work, she sheds light on the intricate facets of womanhood, examining the multifaceted roles, challenges, and aspirations of women in the Arab world today. Ali's exploration serves as a powerful commentary on the complex intersection of gender, culture, and societal expectations, offering a platform for dialogue and reflection on these important issues.
Drawing inspiration from his cultural and societal roots, the photographer skillfully captures personal and intimate moments, placing his subjects at the forefront of his compositions. Through his work, he delves into the essence of the past, creating a nostalgic atmosphere that resonates with viewers. Employing a film photography approach, often utilizing 35mm cameras, he adds an additional layer of nostalgia to his images.
This deliberate choice of medium imbues his photographs with a timeless quality, evoking a sense of nostalgia and connecting the present with the rich tapestry of history. By combining his cultural heritage, societal context, and a keen eye for capturing intimate moments, the photographer creates a visual narrative that invites viewers to reflect upon their own experiences and appreciates the beauty of the past.
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