Art, book gallery showcases young talents

Visitors express ‘pride’ in Jordan’s youth artists

(Photos: Handouts from the Qalqilia Council)
A new book and art gallery — named the Book and Art Gallery — was inaugurated on Thursday at the Qalqilia Council in eastern Amman under the patronage of Minister of Culture Haifa Al-Najjar.اضافة اعلان

The gallery displayed paintings, drawings, books, and a mosaic from the Friends of Archaeology and Heritage Society. Visitors were able to talk with local writers who held book signings, enjoy live music, learn the art of creating a mosaic, and watch a poetry debate.

The exhibition’s focus was to intertwine language and art in one place and create a space for youth to engage with their culture through creative means.

At the opening ceremony, Culture Minister Najjar stressed the role of such galleries in preserving Arabic literature. Praising the artwork displayed and youth engagement in the art, she said: “Young people play the greatest role in deepening and consolidating cultural values.”

Director-General of Qalqilia Council MP Mayada Al-Shreim emphasized that book and art exhibits have now become mainstream cultural events. Their growing popularity shows that galleries “consolidate cultural identity in people’s minds and preserve literary heritage.” 

“Today’s event aims to enhance the cultural content available to Jordanian youth,” gallery organizer Osama Dahdooh told Jordan News.

The gallery has pledged to provide 1,000 books to students for free, including philosophy and politics books, novels, and short stories. “These books are readable and simple, tailored to different age groups,” Dahdooh said.

Artworks displayed were all created by youth, the organizer said, adding that the choice was deliberate. “The exhibition focuses on attracting young artists rather than famous ones, to allow them to apply their talents and help them expand their reach in pursuing their passion for art,” he said. “Ultimately, Qalqilia Council aims at supporting local talents financially and on all levels.”

In an effort to engage youth creatively across all facets of culture, the center also contains a music studio with a range of voice engineering equipment. The studio aims “to teach youth how to play cultural and traditional music and improve their skills”, said Dahdooh.
The exhibition focuses on attracting young artists rather than famous ones, to allow them to apply their talents and help them expand their reach in pursuing their passion for art.
Murad Al-Sharkasi, a local author who composed two books, “My Heart is at the Bottom” and “A Hundred No’s”, told Jordan News: “I am very impressed by the gallery. I was honored to have a book signing event and to have met many ambitious youths.”

Local youth novelist Anas Yasser, who wrote “Disorder” and “The Game of Consciousness”, said that the event allowed him to share his works with the public.

Yasser’s writings focus on human psychology. This is due to his interest in philosophy and psychology. Through his writing, he aims to fill a gap in Jordanian psychological novels.

“The idea for the gallery is excellent, since it brings art and book lovers together and spreads awareness among youth to direct their attention to such cultural events,” he said.

Tala Tamimi, a young artist who showed two of her paintings, the international prize-winning “Omari Tiger” and “Confusion in the Subconscious Mind”, told Jordan News: “All the paintings displayed in the gallery are fantastic, and today’s event helped me to deliver the messages behind my paintings to the attendees.”

“I hope upcoming exhibitions at the council help me reach an even larger audience,” Tamimi said.

Maya Al-Kazimi, another young artist with a passion for fine arts who also presented her art at the gallery, told Jordan News: “I am so glad that there are people in Jordan who are ready to offer their help to publicize our talents.” 

Her painting is of a girl drawn in charcoal with her back turned. “While the meaning is not so obvious at first glance, the girl symbolizes how I have cast all my cares behind me and let go of all my troubles,” she said.

Danya Odeh, a gallery visitor, said: “I am so proud that we have such talents in Jordan. I saw paintings and books with special purposes and ideas that I never encountered before.”

The Qalqilia Council provides social, cultural, and charitable services to the local community.

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