The Beginning of Thinking is Geometric

Maraya Art Centre, Sharjah / U.A.E.

July 10, 2013

17 July–30 September 2013

Al Qasba
Al Taawun Road, PO Box 62932
Sharjah, UAE
Hours: Saturday – Thursday 10am–10pm
Friday 4pm–10pm

T +971 6 55 66 555

info [​at​]

Curated by Sara Raza

Maraya Art Centre, an initiative of Sharjah Investment and Development Authority (Shurooq) and with the support of Emirates Integrated Telecommunications Company (du) will host a unique exhibition titled The Beginning of Thinking is Geometric, a group show of 13 established and emerging artists as well as designers and architects, including both collectives and collaborations.

Curated by Sara Raza, London-based Associate Curator for Maraya Art Centre; The Beginning of Thinking is Geometric references the activity of (re)thinking the science of geometry as a visual, cultural, textual and performative aesthetics. Highlighting a break away from the pragmatic towards more thinking sciences, this curatorial project explores cutting-edge diverse practices within the works of visual artists and designers, whose practices exist at the cusp of multiple aesthetic, social and cultural concerns.

Giuseppe Moscatello, Maraya Art Centre Manager stated:  “This exhibition aims to provide a myriad of visions into the transformative ways in which artists have explored mathematics and geometry to create strong messages about artistic agency. As part of our commitment to the community, this exhibition touches on Islamic art, which complements the Emirates of Sharjah being the Capital of Islamic Culture for 2014.”

Curator Sara Raza explains: “This is an experimental project that calls for a visual cultural reassessment into the origins of geometry and mathematics. It investigates the thought process that occur behind the actual making of works that derive from geometric forms, which are employed to explore issues pertaining to space and time.”

The exhibition will showcase the works of the following artists: Sarah Al Abdali, Sarah Abu Abdallah Ebtisam Abdulaziz, Farhad Ahrarnia, Zeigam Azizov, Fayçal Baghriche, Ala Ebtekar, Basmah Felemban, Fatima Al Qadiri & Alex Gvojic, Mobius Design Studio & Faysal Tabbarah, Hayv Kahraman, Nasir Nasrallah and Jamal Tayara-Baroudy, many of whom are commissioned specially for the exhibition. Projects presented within the exhibition are deployed within an array of different mediums ranging from drawings, sculpture, audio-visual installation, text and informal architecture.

Exhibition highlights include brand-new site-specific works by renowned San Francisco-based artist Ala Ebtekar, along with Jeddah-based emerging artist Basmah Felemban. Furthermore, a special design focus will also explore and expand the curatorial theme through informal architectures with projects by UAE-based Mobius Design Studio with design architect Faysal Tabbarah and designer Jamal Tayara-Baroudy, who revisits the traditional Arabic majlis.

As part of the exhibition Maraya will be hosting a series of workshops inspired by the exhibition. A full English/Arabic catalogue will be published, including a curatorial essay by Sara Raza and select Instagram diaries by participating artists.

About Maraya Art Centre
The Maraya Art Centre is an innovative arts space and in the region, showcasing curated exhibitions and public programmes that aim to promote and encourage emerging artists and creative communities in the UAE and greater Gulf.

A non-profit art space and cultural platform located in Al Qasba, Sharjah, the Maraya Art Centre is an initiative by the Sharjah Investment and Development Authority (Shurooq), with the purpose of promoting young artists from both the Arab region and the international art scene.

Officially launched in March 2010, it is one of the UAE’s most spectacular venues for contemporary visual arts.

A three-storey art centre, established over 1,500 square meters located in the heart of UAE’s cultural capital, it includes the Maraya Art Gallery on the third floor; the Barjeel Art Foundation on the second floor, which features the private collection of Sultan Sooud Al Qassemi; and Maraya Community, which offers a diverse range of programmes and educational activities, on the first floor.

About Sara Raza
Sara Raza is a PhD candidate at the Royal College of Art, London, an independent curator, editor for ArtAsiaPacific Magazine (West and Central Asia) and an editorial correspondent for Ibraaz. She was the founding head of the curatorial programmes at Alåan Artspace in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia and is associate curator at the Maraya Art Centre, Sharjah and the Artists Pension Trust (APT). Since 2010 she has been a visiting lecturer at Sotheby’s Institute of Art, London, for the Masters Contemporary Art programme. Sara is a former curator at Tate Modern, South London Gallery and Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin and has curated, lectured and published internationally. Sara holds a MA in Art History & Theory (20th century) and BA (hons) in English Literature & History of Art both from Goldsmiths College, University of London. She blogs regularly about her activities at

For more information please contact:
Tarek Abougabal
tarek [​at​] / MAC [​at​]
T +971501130411