"Ali Kaaf: Aswad (Black)", Invitation Card, September 2004
"Ali Kaaf: Aswad (Black)", September/October 2004
Aswad (Black)
Ali Kaaf

7 September – 15 October 2004

The Master of Possibility and of the Mountain

"In his childhood, Ali gave colour to Jabal Amman. Perched like a bird at Darat al Funun, Ali was trying to deduce Amman’s hill top, the base, the trees and the rows of houses with subtle rich harmonious colours full of joy and wonder.

Jabal Amman remained with him in his memory, and became a metaphor for future works. “Jabal” (Mountain) is this rising triangle filling us with excitement, and with the need to discover what lies beyond and inside. The mountain is the all encompassing, the proud, the holder and protector of secrets and never ending questions.

In addition, the mountain to Ali is the witness, the branch the thigh, it is what is hidden and that which is exposed. The mountain is the roof and nostalgia, it is life and the joint memory between the artist and his receiver.

In Berlin, Ali’s journey with the mountain continued still, and his works carried signs and portents of development and investigation, drifting away from the melodious nature of his first attempts with colour, and bearing new assurance regarding the order of canvas-space, together with questions about the authenticity of the work, its legitimacy and the issue of colour and shape.

Ali chose the rocky road of linking himself with his work through the canvas and its possibilities. He had to seek out other means by which to express all that is going though his soul and imagination about a painting which carries his prints, letters and lines.

Then came “Black” with its endless possibilities, assurances and utterance. There was ink, asphalt graphite, soot and resin. There and then, black with its clear-cut (yet obscure) diagrams became the essential medium of expression on paper. Paper which forms the other element bonding with black as its carrier of drawing by virtue paper’s crispness and flexibility.

Thus the drawings become as invisible drapes and doors that sometimes appear closed but not to the keen sensitivity of its onlookers, and their wonderment."

Berlin 2004