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"Rihla", an Art Exhibition Inspired by Islamic Civilization
Monday 18 February, 2013

Under the auspices of His Highness Dr Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah, Sheikh Salem Bin Abdul Rahman Al Qasimi, Director of Sharjah Ruler's Office, inaugurated on Sunday, February 17, 2013, the sand art exhibition "Rihla" (The Journey) by German Dutch artist Elvira Wersche, which will run until April 25, 2013.
It is worth mentioning that Wersche's sand art is inspired by geometric patterns of Islamic art. In her art, Wersche uses sand of diverse color and mineral composition from around the world in a unique and unprecedented way. The title of the exhibition, "Rihla", refers to her journey through many destinations around the world to collect the materials used in her art and the gradual, conceptual evolution of the final design with its countless ornaments.
Moreover, the name suggests the wanderings of the Bedouins, as well as the spiritual meaning of the journey that usually stems from religious knowledge and the quest to learn the truths of existence.
Commenting on her exhibition, Wersche said that she is fascinated by the basic features of Islamic patterns, which inspire her art. She also pointed out that working in Sharjah has been a very unique and exciting experience for her, and that she was overwhelmed by the great welcome, warm feelings and deep appreciation that she received from visitors who followed her work.
On her part, Mrs. Manal Ataya, Director General of the Sharjah Museums Department (SMD), said that the SMD is proud to host the "Rihla" exhibition. "Wersche's artistic designs are inspired by Islamic geometric patterns. Her art is characterized by great intellectual depth and its unique aesthetics invite the audience to profoundly interact with it," Ataya added.
It is worth mentioning that the "Rihla" exhibition will run at the Sharjah Museum of Islamic Art until April 25, 2013, after which it will be transformed into another artistic experience involving the public. All the sands will be mixed together into one and given away to remind us that everything in this life is in constant flux, and that everything is transient.

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