| A Trajectory of Etchings - 1980's to 2000 |
Rashid Diab, Sudan
Red Hill Art Gallery is honoured to show in this exhibition part of the archive of the artist’s print work dated from the 1980’s until 2000, which he created during his 20 year stay in Madrid (Spain), as Artist-in-Residence, a PHD fellow and later as a lecturer at the Department of Fine Art at the Complutense University of Madrid. Rashid Diab is a master in print techniques including the complete spectrum of Etchings, Collagraphs, Aquatints, Woodcuts and Silkscreens.
The exhibition comprises a selection of more than 50 prints, from meticulously elaborated miniatures to multi-coloured large-scale prints. Rashid Diab lives and works in Khartoum.
“In order to create a print, one has to be a good drawer or sketcher, a painter and a sculptor, and have knowledge of space and volume.”
All my life, since I can remember I have been on a search to capture images through drawing, painting and sculpture, until I came upon the particularity of printmaking. Which is composed or contains the sense of drawing, better yet the dimension of the line but with a special touch mixed between accident and surprise. I found myself taken away, once again surprised and excited by the force of the line, composition and balance, by the numerous forms of etching as a way to obtain an image. A tradition within the art world to which I add my experience of color. I went through an engraving process, the production of textures and a concentration of the subject like I hadn’t before. I found prints to be more poetic, a world of depths and various dimensions. It gave me more space and/or possibilities of creation.
Most intriguing I find the relation between the artist and his work as him being the first spectator of the piece. When I make prints or paint for that matter I find things that emerge from the creation process that appear on their own, but to know that I was conscious of them whilst doing them…passing the paper under the heavy roll of my printing press I find joy when coming across unexpected forms. I believe that my work tends to have something that I find in it without remembering that I meant it. Makes me feel that I am not only doing the art, that technique itself accompanies me in the creation, it adds value and forms, something I find more in printmaking than other techniques of art.
I have always loved the relief in historical things, such as monuments of antiquity, ancient murals of Meroetic and Kush civilizations for instance or Arabic calligraphy aesthetic, the shades in drawings and the different signs nature has to offer. The expressions of animals and their forms. For instance the bird has a big role in the history of Sudan, from being gods to being the reflection of liberty. A bird atop a human head means stillness. It portrays a lack of respect towards free movement, as the person with the bird is no challenge or creates no fear in this animal. Unlike what we would usually find. These symbols and motifs in my prints create in me a sensation of nostalgia, of my experiences when I lived in Spain when my beloved Sudan seemed far. They are stories and histories and tales that remind me of Sudan and African life. They are a reflection of my traditions and artistic identity, my Sufi religious upbringing that provided elements in color and architecture like the holy domes that reign over the land in tombs. Also humane feeling, in the sense of a call for peace and tranquility. I had been homesick as they say, what I missed the most was the conversations and landscapes of my land. So I started a dialogue between my etchings and that which I missed. One thing I learned in my experience during this explosion of printmaking is that one has to be an avid reader and very knowledgeable of history and tradition.
I am deeply grateful that this part of my history is appreciated and remembered by Mr. Hellmuth and the team at Red Hill Art Gallery, it is really a historically significant event which only certain eyes can comprehend. Truly one of my most loved times during my career, for it to be honored and enjoyed in such a manner is a blessing.
Dr. Rashid Diab
From this Exhibition
Publications & Press
Sudan artist Rashid reveals passion for printmaking Margaretta wa Gacheru - BUSINESS DAILY