The Fourth Ruya Lab was a day-long seminar about printing, editioning and exhibiting photography for the international art market. The workshop took place ahead of ‘Calling Calouste’ an exhibition of new Iraqi photography commissioned by Ruya, which opens on October 1 2016 at the Gulbenkian Building in Baghdad. Six of the eight photographers participating in the exhibition attended this preliminary workshop in Baghdad.
As many of the participants were meeting and encountering each other’s work for the first time, they began by presenting and discussing their projects for the exhibition. The group conversations were lead by Furat al Jamil, the Ruya Foundation’s Iraq Director, who has shown her work as an artist and filmmaker internationally. They learnt how to prepare their work for an exhibition of internationally recognised standards. This includes aspects such as editioning, selecting a size and format for their images and framing. In addition, the photographers will be working together to co-organise the exhibition with Ruya.
In this upcoming show, the selected photographers are asked to develop their own ways of displaying and installing their work at the Gulbenkian Building. With support from Ruya, including funds and materials, the photographers are encouraged to think creatively about the display, in relation to their own projects. Ideas around how the works could be displayed were discussed in the workshop.
The participants at the workshop were: Hadi Al Najjar, president of the Photographer’s Society in Baghdad, Baghdad-based photographers Mazin Mundhir, Ayman Al Amiri and Zaid Al Obaidy, Muhanad Al Sudani from Amara in Southern Iraq and the Sulaymaniya-based photographer Kadhim Ali who joined the workshop over a conference call.