Evolution of Man | Lightbox | H79.2 CM X W59.4CM | 2010
"Saudis do not believe in the theory of evolution. Like other conservative societies, they firmly reject Darwin’s theory on the basis that humans are perfect..."Edge of Arabia is a group of Saudi contemporary artists of which Ahmed Mater is a prominent member. Mater was born in 1979 in the traditional A jack of all trades, aside from being a qualified GP, he is a curator, a landscape photographer and the face of a large telecommunications company. He is just as well-regarded at home as overseas; King Fahad has opened one of his solo shows, while in the West, The British Museum has purchased his work.
Mater's work poignantly uses medical imagery to raise questions that trouble his society like suicide and oil, the effect of consumerism on traditional life and religious identity. Pain and society's sickness are expressed through X-ray here. His colours communicate vividly; stained sepia accompanies traditional Islamic motifs and text, the language of science and x-rays is coldly blue. There seems to be a nostalgia for the 'unstained,' a yearning for the time before commercialism drove the hoards from mosques to malls. In his series, Illumination, the X-rayed people long for the impossible - for their x-rays to show their humanity. The soul is to be found in the contrast to the x-ray- the earthy traditional materials show the chasms between the languages of science and faith, faith and logic...
Illumination (Skull) |105 x 155 cm |Offset X-Ray film print, Tea, Pomegrenate, Dupont Chinese Ink and Watercolour on Arch Archival Paper |2009