Zakaria Ramhani .pdf


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ZAKARIA RAMHANI

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133 Orchard Street, New York, NY 10002

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info@juliemeneret.com |

212.477.5269

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www.juliemeneret.com

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ZAKARIA RAMHANI!
Born 1983 in Tangier, Morocco. Lives and works in Canada and the USA.
SOLO EXHIBITIONS
2013
Julie Meneret Contemporary Art, New York (USA)
Artspace, London (UK)
2012
My Face is a Word, Atelier 21, Casablanca (Morocco)
2010
Zoom Art Fair, Miami (USA)
Recent Works, Atelier 21, Casablanca (Morocco); Artspace Dubai (UAE)
2009
From Right to Left, Centre d’Exposition Val-d’Or, Quebec (Canada)
2008
Faces of Your Other, Artspace Dubai (UAE)
2006
Le temps de la mort, Galerie de la Cité Internationale des Arts, Paris (France)
Corps possédés/Solitude collective, Galerie CROUS des Beaux-Arts, Paris (France)
GROUP EXHIBITIONS
2013
25 Years of Arabic Creativity, Emirate Palace, Abu Dhabi (UAE); Institut du Monde Arabe,
Paris (France); National Museum of Bahrain, Manama (Bahrain)
Art 13 Art Fair, London (UK)
Artspace Dubai (UAE)
Atelier 21, Casablanca (Morocco)
2012
Barbican Centre (Curator: Vincenzo Sanfo), London (UK)
Art Dubai, Contemporary Art Fair, (UAE)
2011
Marrakech Art Fair (Morocco)
Art Dubai (UAE)
2010
Marrakech Art Fair (Morocco)
Art Dubai (UAE)
2009
Made in Arnhem, International Festival of the Arts, Arnhem (Netherlands)
On the Ground, Underground, Intramoenia ExtrArt (Collaboration with Achille Bonito
Oliva), Barletta (Italy)
Art Dubai (UAE)
2008
11th Cairo Biennale (Egypt)
Dak’Art, 8th Biennale of Contemporary African Art, Dakar (Senegal)
Art Dubai (UAE)
World into Art (Curator : Venetia Porter), British Museum at DIFC Dubai (UAE)

RESIDENCIES
2013
Reis Studios, New York (USA) in collaboration with Julie Meneret Contemporary Art
2008
Cité Internationale des Arts, Paris (France)
2006

Cité Internationale des Arts, Paris (France)
GRANTS
French Embassy in Morocco, Exchange Program with the Moroccan Cultural Ministry
COLLECTIONS
Vanhaerents Art Collection (Belgium)
Alain-Dominique Perrin Collection, Paris (France)
Barjeel Foundation Collection, Sharjah (UAE)
Jean-Paul Blachère Foundation (France)
Bank Al-Maghreb Museum (Morocco)
Banque Populaire Collection (Morocco)
Royal Family Collection (Morocco)

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Faces of Your Other #50, 2013
Acrylic on linen
94 x 78 in

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The Unknown General, 2013
Oil on linen
94 x 78 in

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Faces of Your Other #52, 2013!
Acrylic on linen
94 x 78 in

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I’m Sorry Father series, 2013
(Adolf, Saddam, Osama)
Oil on linen
60 x 48 in

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Zakaria Ramhani, May Allah Forgive Me, Vol. 1 and 2.
Exhibition: November 6 – December 22
Vol. 1: Opening November 6, 6pm
Vol. 2: Opening December 4, 6pm
Julie Meneret Contemporary Art is pleased to announce a two-part solo exhibition of recent
paintings by Zakaria Ramhani. Contact info@juliemeneret.com for more information.
Zakaria Ramhani is a Moroccan painter whose large-scale portraits use Arabic calligraphy as a
formal gesture. His use of a traditionally Islamic form contradicts the religious taboo on
figuration. Ramhani grew up in a Muslim society and in an artistic household; his father was a
landscape painter who avoided portraying the human figure for religious reasons. He
occasionally had to paint commissioned portraits and explained to his son that he would ask
God’s forgiveness. May Allah Forgive Me refers to a sense of guilt that haunts both the artist
and his paintings. Each person who reads this title is uttering a prayer, one of the most potent
linguistic constructions.
Inspired by recent political activism in Egypt and the Middle East, Ramhani has caused
controversy by questioning religious tradition and denouncing violence. Authorities at Art Dubai
censored Ramhani’s You Were My Only Love (2012) for its depiction of police brutality in Tahrir
Square. Ramhani altered the famous image of the “blue bra woman,” who became a symbol of
Egyptian protest against extreme military power, showing her struggling against gorillas as
Vincent Van Gogh looks on disapprovingly.
For this exhibition, Ramhani continues to provoke thought by altering well-known media
imagery. His series of famous dictators in a state of childhood anonymity points to a kind of
impossibility of obtaining truth through representation. His paintings are also deeply personal—
as will be reflected in Volume 2—meditating on the ways that language impacts configurations
of identity. What can be conveyed about subjectivity hovers between text and image, between
the system of language and the individual’s dream of a cohesive self.
Ramhani launched his professional career in 2006, when he became the youngest Moroccan
citizen to be awarded a residency at the Cité Internationale des Arts in Paris. Since then he has
exhibited throughout Europe and the Middle East, including at The Barbican Centre London,
Institut du Monde Arabe in Paris, The British Museum at the DIFC Dubai, and The Cairo Biennial.
Julie Meneret Contemporary Art is a new contemporary art gallery committed to promoting an
international roster of talented emerging artists working with particular passion and
purpose. The gallery is dedicated to fostering forms of contemporary art that challenge
conventions and offer critical approaches to fundamental issues in our global world.

SELECTED PRESS!
Wall Street International, “Summer 2013 Group Exhibition” July 17th 2013.
New York Times, “Artists and Shows Navigate Cultural Boundaries in U.A.E.” by Vinita
Bharadwaj, March 13th 2013.
New York Times, “Creating Art as Witness to Arab Spring” by Rana F. Sweis, April 4th 2012.
The Art Newspaper, “Art Dubai Keeps Strong Regional Identity” by Georgina Adam, March 22nd
2012.
New York Times, “Creating a Place for Contemporary Art” by Vinita Bharadwaj, March 21st 2012.
BBC News, “Arab Spring inspires regional artists” by Sylvia Smith April 22nd 2011.
CNN, “Artists reflect Egypt’s revolutionary spirit” by Neil Curry, April 11th 2011.
BLOUIN ArtInfo, “Between an Artistic Oasis and a Mirage: Impressions of Art Dubai 2011” by
Ben Davis, March 22nd 2011.
Le Parisien, “Dubai: deux tableaux sur le printemps arabe retirés de la Foire d’art contemporain,”
March 22nd 2011.
Le Soir-Echos, “Zakaria Ramhani: De la peinture et des lettres” by Fouzia Marouf, September
13th 2010.
Artprice, “Top 10 Artists Under 30,” March 9th 2010.


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