Hodhayfa Salih (b. 1976 IQ)
Exhibition at Titanik gallery, Turku 24.–31.5.
Exhibition at Gallery 3h+k, Pori 10.–20.7.
Uruk was an ancient metropolis and city state in southern Mesopotamia, the southern Iraq today. In archaeological excavations, there have been finds of remains of the cities from several eras, of which the oldest are from prehistoric times, perhaps already from the 5th century BC. Around 2700 BC the city was probably ruled by Sumerian King Gilgameš, the most famous of the ancient Mesopotamian heroes and the protagonist of the Gilgameš epic. The epic is the story of King Gilgameš, who has been also proclaimed to be God, and his friend Enkidu's heroic deeds and their deaths. The epic is often considered as the earliest surviving and still well-known great work of literature of the world.
The exhibition From Uruk to Finland is built around two sculptures. The first sculpture, titled Occupation, includes a bird, which looks more like a monster than a regular bird. This creature has occupied a tree, which symbolizes the country, and it begins to build its own nest by taking away wealth from the others at the same time.
The second sculpture is called From Uruk to Finland. The theme is based on the Gilgamesh epic and tells the hero’s story of travelling to find immortality. Gilgameš represents Iraqi people today who travell all around the world to find peace.
Text by Okko Pöyliö, a gallery coordinator in Titanik.
Gallery 3h+k, Pori: Put yourself in their place
The exhibition consists of the drawings and collages that Salih has recently made about presidents and other political persons. Salih writes:
"This exhibition is called "Put yourself in their place". I want to send everyone this message so that they put themselves in such place and think of others. I used collage of several portraits of presidents and prime ministers of the world and some famous political figures.
I want them to start think of others and realize that these people are humans as well and have the same worth as they do."
Caisa Culture Centre, Helsinki: Urget Call
During the residency Salih also made works that will be presented at Caisa on 6th–30th October. His exhibition “Urgent Call” with Muhaned Durubi displays their thoughts on life outside the Middle East war zone. They question the beliefs of their culture, religion and lifestyle, and visualise the contradictions and questions they have faced.
Salih was also a jury member of Baltic Herring Short Film Competition / Blue Sea Film Festival.
Hodhayfa Salih was born in Baghdad in 1976. He graduated as a visual artist from the Baghdad Art University in 2003 and he obtained Master of Fine Arts and Crafts from G.S. Skovoroda Kharkiv National Pedagogical University in 2009. Salih’s work has been widely exhibited internationally. His work is in collections in Europe, Asia, the Middle East and North America. He is a member of the Iraqi Artists' Association, the Iraqi Plastic Co-operative, the Ukrainian Union of Artists, the Helsinki Artists’ Association and a founding member of the contemporary "Nusku" artist association.