Bahrain Spring of Culture 2015

Amazing arty events to give you a culture fix this month Discuss this article

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If there’s one thing you certainly can’t complain about in Bahrain it’s a lack of artistic events. Throughout the year we’re inundated with a range of fascinating cultural initiatives and exhibitions, aiming to broaden our minds and promote local talent. This month is no exception with a huge array of wonderful events and must-visit exhibits…

Film screenings at La Fontaine
April 5 and 19

Two outdoor film screenings are taking place in the stunning courtyard of La Fontaine Centre for Contemporary Art & Spa. Firstly there’s ‘Le Petit Peintre du Rajasthan’ which discovers the Indian cinema scene in France and reveals how social conflicts on the subcontinent arise even in the privacy of families. Then, on April 19, ‘Axis of Light’ is being shown, a film which portrays a journey across borders and histories through the work of eight artists all linked to the Middle East and North Africa. Both screenings start at 7pm and cost BD10. You can use the credit in the restaurant on the same night.
Call 1723 0123.

‘Banquet’ poetry and music
April 6
The House of Poetry – Ebrahim Al Arrayed is hosting famed Lebanese writer and poet Joumana Haddad. This event fuses poetry and music seamlessly. It starts at 8.30pm and is free to enter.

The Margins
April 7 to April 21
Al Bareh Gallery’s latest exhibition brings together four Saudi Arabia-based artists offering original, poignant approaches to abstraction. They present the viewers with a collective abandonment of the concept of perspective in an attempt to manipulate their own realities through various mediums. The idea of removing mundane visual references from everyday life is consistent throughout each of these artists’ works. The exhibition is open from Saturday to Thursday, 9am to 1.30pm and 4pm to 8pm.

Farid Al-Atrash 40 Years Later
April 9
This showcase of the late, great singer Farid Al-Atrash by the National Arab Band of Music brings to life the authentic Egyptian tarab style. The concert takes place at the Cultural Hall from 8pm and you must be at least eight years old to attend. It’s free entrance.

Fast Time in Palestine
April 9
Political volunteer and journalist Pamela J Olson, the author of the award-winning memoir ‘Fast Times in Palestine’, is speaking at La Fontaine Centre for Contemporary Art & Spa about the years she lived in Palestine during and after the second Intifada. The lecture and book signing starts from 7pm and costs BD10 inclusive of canapés and soft drinks or BD25 with dinner and live music.
Call 1723 0123.

Joss Stone live
April 10

British soul singer-songwriter and actress, Joss Stone, soared to fame back in 2003 with her multi-platinum debut album ‘The Soul Sessions’ and has since released six more high-charting albums with another to be released this year. For the Spring of Culture’s tenth anniversary she’s set to perform, the day before her 28th birthday, at Arad Fort from 8.30pm. You must be at least eight years old to attend.
Tickets are available on Call 3990 0630.

April 12 to May 7
Eight female artists offer their reflections on their connections with Islam in this new exhibition at Al Riwaq Art Space. The works are showcased through a range of styles and mediums including video installation and photomontage. The exhibition also includes weekly talks with the artist. It’s launches at 7pm on April 12.

The Novel and the Change in Saudi society
April 20
A fascinating lecture on Saudi Arabian society is being hosted by Badriya Al Bishr, a Saudi writer and television presenter who’s known for penning numerous novels, such as ‘Cardamom Seed’ and ‘End Game’. She currently hosts a talk show on social issues within Saudi society on MBC 1. The lecture is being held at Abdullah Al-Zayed for Bahraini Press Heritage from 8pm, free of charge.

Sovereign Art Foundation Schools Prize
April 22 to 29
This week-long art exhibition is showcasing works by students from across the country in a bid to help 5,000 orphans in Bahrain, thanks to the Sovereign Art Foundation and Royal Charity Organisation. The student entries are being displayed to the public in the Isa Cultural Centre and then an auction gala dinner will take place on May 3 at the Four Seasons Bahrain Bay. Tickets are BD50. You can buy the paintings at any time. All proceeds will go to the Royal Charity Organisation to support Bahrain’s vulnerable orphans.
Call 1715 1527.

Urban Culture Week
April 23 to May 2

For the second year in a row, Red Bull’s Bahrain Urban Culture Week is in town and this time it’s being held at creative hub Malja. Visiting and local artists are conducting free workshops focusing on the main pillars of hip hop culture – rapping, DJ-ing, break dancing, graffiti and music production. This includes a three-day B-Boy training camp, basic and advanced music production and graffiti workshops. It concludes, on May 1 from 8pm, with the Red Bull BC One Bahrain Cypher when the top 16 local B-Boys will battle it out to be crowned ‘the best’.

Kalila Wa Dimna
April 23 until September 30
This brand new interactive art exhibition at the Bahrain National Museum uses stories from the famous collection of fables known as Kalila Wa Dimna or ‘Fables of Time’. It brings to life the characters, their relationships and lessons learned through digitally reproduced manuscripts from collection across the world, alongside original illustrations and a digital guide to these stories. It’s free to enter and an educational programme also accompanies the exhibition.

La Creation handmade craft bazaar
April 25
A group of like-minded artists in Bahrain, La Creation, are hosting a one-off handmade arts and crafts bazaar at the InterContinental Regency Bahrain from noon to 8pm. Explore numerous stalls by local artists and craftspeople selling everything from needlecraft to paintings, jewellery to culinary creations.

Art Rich

In a bid to beautify Bahrain, a group of artists calling themselves ‘Art Rich’ are transforming bus stops, walls and public buildings, in the Northern Governorate, into works of art through brightly coloured mosaics, reports national newspaper Gulf Daily News. This started on new bus stops on the Budaiya Highway and now plans are underway to expand the idea through public parks in Shakhoora, Janabiya and Hamad Town, as well as Budaiya beach.

By Time Out Bahrain staff
Time Out Bahrain,

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