SHADI AL-ATALLAH : I LOST THE TITLE ON THE PLANE
Shadi Al-Atallah will be presenting their debut solo exhibition with Guts Gallery. After months spent living and painting in Bahrain, unable to leave due to restrictions of the pandemic, Shadi has returned to the UK with a new body of work.
These works and the title itself are formed from moments in transit, working and existing in a state of fluidity between time zones, locations and introspection.
I LOST THE TITLE ON THE PLANE, explores the idea of stagnation. Shadi uses swamps as a reference for this state of being. Swamps are the perfect parallel to feeling stagnant, like still water and wet soil. It’s an uncomfortable and undesired state. Like swamps, this undesired state can bring forth a new type of life and can give birth to a new way of being. Shadi’s recent paintings are a product of a stagnant state, an attempt to force life out of a swampy disposition.
Private View: 7th October 6-9pm
Location: Seeding Space, London Performance Studios, U29 Penarth Centre, Penarth Street, London, SE15 1TR
General Opening Hours: 11 - 6pm
About Shadi Al-Atallah
Shadi Al-Atallah was born in Saudi Arabia in 1994 and currently lives and works in London, UK. They received their MA in Painting from the Royal College of Art in 2021. Al-Atallah creates large-scale figurative paintings: the dark and dynamic figures depicted in their mixed-media work are distorted self-portraits of the artist that capture the absurdity of conflicting emotional states. Their work explores the performativity of cathartic spiritual practice by drawing connections between the Queer ballroom scene and folkloric dance traditions from African diasporic communities in the Arabian Peninsula.
Working in rapid motions and strokes, Shadi works fast to avoid their thoughts slipping, contending with their own cognition and memory. Each painting documents a single hazy moment in time, examining the space between the mundane and the spiritual.
Shadi makes use of paint to escape from the constraints of language. Painting allows
them to invent genderless figures, ones that embody an ambiguity that language rarely grants. This ambiguity is used to question Shadi’s own ideas on gender and sexuality. Obscurity also allows breathing room for the viewer to connect with the artwork.