Sarah Al Abdali
Born in 1990 in Qatif, Sarah Abu Abdallah lives and works in Riyadh. She is a multidisciplinary artist whose practice investigates the sociocultural conditions of Saudi Arabia. Abu Abdullah analyses the Kingdom’s changing landscape, which has become a heterotopic allegory in her work. Working across video, painting, and installations, her interests are centred on generating associations of the poetic and the absurd, integrating conversations she has with friends, family,
and her community into her collaborative pieces. She creates speculative spaces and narrative assemblages based on fragments of reality coloured by absurdity and awkwardness, drawing upon the forms of everyday life as well as her native experiences. Abu Abdallah works in a diaristic mode, where mundane activities, shared public spaces and the architecture of the home are recast as relatable subjects, through which she investigates the subtexts of everyday life. her subjects can be seemingly unrelated on a surface level, however her approach is one of abstract logic, wherein outwardly abstracted fragments can be understood as outlying expressions of a significant, underlying narrative that they share.
Abu Abdallah has had recent exhibitions in Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Germany and her work can be found in the collections of Greenbox Museum, Amsterdam, NL, and Sharjah Art Foundation, Sharjah, UAE. She holds a master’s degree in digital media art studies from Rhode Island School of Design, Providence, USA, and a BFA from the College of Art and Design from the University of Sharjah, UAE.
I’m born in a time where most of what I’ve learnt about my identity was only accessible through oral historic narratives. I’ve grown to learn about the importance of preserving cultural heritage through my own experience as a Makkan witnessing the erasure of its own architectural and urban character in expense of capitalist modernity. – Sarah Al Abdali