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Rose Water

Inspired by a chance comment during a visit to the Cy Twombly Gallery at the Menil Collection in Houston, Nazar Yahya questions the idea of completeness in these works: “Did the artist sense the meaning of completion, [the] meaning of eternity, that things are not complete except in the form of absolute? … Did he start from what seemed to be destruction to reach this stage of the image (painting)?” Directly related to purity and the negation of the self to achieve closeness to the divine, he also refers to the writing of 13th-century Sufi poet, Jalal al-Din al-Rumi. Here, the rose garden is not literal but is a metaphor for exploring the boundary between life and death, while the sensory experiences of the roses are combined with the rhythm of recited poetry as a kind of meditation. The photographic image of the female face is timeless, closely resembling the face of an ancient Sumerian sculpture. It is also tragic, as the rose water pours over her face like tears, which infuses the works with a pink hue. This pink colour not only reflects the essence of roses but also the light that filters through eyelids, as if the viewer is on the edge of subconsciousness: “Close your eyes and ponder, in this similar moment, created by your eyelids application, love, pain, sadness, excitement, passion and look into your heart to the forms that you will see, you’ll see something that is not quite there, not from the present world...”