house 11

khaleeji house by khaleeji art museum


The COVID-19 pandemic has been one of the most challenging periods for humanity in recent history. We have lost loved ones, mourned, and celebrated in isolation, and our lives, to our large extent, have been put to a halt. But the pandemic has also put our human attributes to the test, and through it we saw how, with love, perseverance, and hope, we can overcome hardships.

Before Take Off is a group exhibition by the Khaleeji Art Museum curated by Sumayyah Al Suwaidi featuring 5 GCC based artists and 1 art initiative.

The exhibition depicts the artists' experiences during the pandemic and highlight the positive human attributes they would like us to include in our next chapter: Life after the pandemic.


Ahmad Al Rifaii (Kuwait)

Better Days / Digital prints

This collection by Ahmed Al Refaie explores and highlights the Covid-19 pandemic through a vibrant approach. In no other time in our lives prior had we experienced a pause in our activities, but as human beings we eventually adapted to our new world, and tried new things as a result. This global moment in history will not be forgotten; it was a time in which some of us found themselves, and which others took advantage of as an opportunity to create a better future for themselves.

Ahmed Al Mahri (UAE)

Life After Covid-19/Digital prints

The artwork depicts the Mona Lisa wearing a mask as if she were part of the Covid-19 pandemic and if she were she would have been painted wearing the mask.

Hamood Al Maqabli (Oman)

Shaving Corner/Installation

‘Shaving Corner’

One of the outcomes of the pandemic was the closure of barber shops, which drove many of the youth to take matters into their own hands. The results varied from success to failure to catastrophic failure. In this artwork, the artist embodies a luxurious contemporary barber's corner to take us back to the very first days of the pandemic. Visitors will be able to recall that period of their lives, but in a novel and artistic manner, to relive the experience without the pandemic.

Leena Al Ayoobi (Bahrain)

Inner Peace/Digital prints

The selected artworks differ in colour and feeling to Leena Al Ayoobi. Inner peace and soul searching are at the core of this collection.The elements of water and air, which have numerous spiritual meanings, are evident in the artworks. Water is a source of luck and prosperity, while the sky symbolises mystery and the future. In finding our inner peace, we find paradise. As the world settles from the chaos of the COVID-19 pandemic, a new chapter begins, where new rules will become the new normal.

Shahad Nazer (Saudi Arabia)

Into the Galaxy/Digital prints

Dive into outer space with Shahad Nazer’s ‘Into the Galaxy’ collection, which will take you to an entirely different planet, one that is beyond one’s imagination. The collection is a perspective of a new world that is far away from the pandemic where we can recharge, after all we have gone through since the spread of the novel coronavirus, for our new beginning.

Wild Arab West

Iman Almidfa & Hessa Al-Ali (UAE)

Smile and the World Will Smile Back/Installation

The idea of the installation centres on the light at end of the tunnel. The room represents the thought process that numerous people experienced during the pandemic. Many were confused with different types of thoughts, positive and negative. However, the past two years have shown us that it is important to always focus on the positive aspect of things regardless of the events that might be covered in the news or that we may experience in our personal lives. Thus, the open gaps in the walls are used to emphasise such a perspective.