Bringing together the artist’s visual and culinary practices, this almanac-like publication designed in collaboration with Layan Attari features recipes and colour swatches derived from ingredients dried on the roof of Jameel Arts Centre and Tabbaa’s study of the sunrise and sunset. Tabbaa uses recipe-writing as a means to draw up analogies and metaphors. Nonhuman beings are personified, given a wide range of feelings and put through evocative processes echoing emotional states, such as uprooting. Her recipes are both instructional and poignant: they evoke a culture of sharing and display a complex knowledge of the materials at hand.
About the Artist
Nahla Tabbaa was commissioned by Jameel Arts Centre to produce a site-specific intervention at Jaddaf Waterfront Sculpture Park. Shamsa is a series of time-based interventions that look at the passage of time through the impact of the sun. Tabbaa’s commission has resulted in a limited-edition artist’s book in collaboration with graphic designer Layan Attari, as well as a selection of flavoured salts, pigments, and oil infusions. Bringing together the artist’s visual arts and culinary practices, this publication features many recipes derived from ingredients dried on the roof of Jameel Arts Center. Tabbaa uses recipe writing as a way to draw up analogies and metaphors. Non-human elements are personified, given a wide range of feelings, and put through evocative processes echoing emotional states such as uprooting or drying. Her recipes are instructional and emotional: they bring about a sense of sharing and imply a complex knowledge of the materials at hand. Nahla Tabbaa will be in conversation with curator Lucas Morin about her process of developing Shamsa. She will then invite audiences to sample the project’s outcomes: salts, chocolates, compound butter, and more.
Nahla Tabbaa (lives and works in Dubai, UAE) is an artist working with different mediums such as alchemy, urban research, the culinary arts, ceramics, and drawing. Her work has been presented at Art Dubai (2022, 2021), East East, Seaf Cohort 8, and Beyyn. She is currently earning a post-graduate degree at Inland Academy- Art, Agriculture and Territories. She earned her MA in Curatorial Practice from the Bath School of Art and Design (2012), and her BFA in Sculpture from Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design (2009). She previously led and developed the community programme at Sharjah Art Foundation, and currently develops education projects independently and in collaboration with institutions including Art Jameel, Warehouse 421, Irthi Crafts Council, Al Serkal Avenue, and the Beacon House National Trust University. She is the co-founder of The Alchemy of Dyeing; an alchemical dyeing educational platform; Forsa School; a critical and professional programme for artists and Daftar Asfar; a sketchbook publishing collective.