Khaled DAWWA (Syria-France, born in 1985)
Khaled Dawwa is a Syrian artist and sculptor based in France since late 2014. He was born in 1985 in the city of Masyaf, west of Syria, and completed his university studies in Damascus where he graduated from the Faculty of Fine Arts, Sculpture Department in 2007. Since his early childhood, Khaled has been interested in the concepts of mass and dimensions, and has begun to experiment with the use of available tools. This encouraged him to complete his secondary education in the professional field, where he gained considerable technical expertise and supported his studies at the Faculty of Fine Arts.
The core characters to Khaled’s work began to crystallize with his graduation project from the Faculty of Fine Arts, which was titled “In Waiting” for the political and social subject to dominate later. During his graduation project, which coincided with major political and social transformations in Arab societies, including Syria, Khaled’s obsession with the role and impact of art in people’s lives dominated his approach. Later, Khaled joined the “Al Bustan” cultural group in Damascus in early 2011, where he helped establish and equip the centre. He continued to work there until 2013. He then travelled to Lebanon where he spent a year hiding, working secretly and continuing his art through the creation of the clay and knife Facebook page. Khaled currently lives in Paris and continues to work at his studio there.
The Stand up ! collection came as a result of Khaled’s artistic residence in Saint-Quentin-la-Butire, in the south of France. The collection was presented at an exhibition of the European Ceramic Arts Festival in July 2017 in the same city. The collection consists of twelve pieces of coloured clay, which is treated with coloured wax. The work includes two basic elements – the personal and the chair. The sculpture sits in a manner suggesting that it is impossible to rise from the chair. The sculptures are adherent, fused, worn out in their chairs.
Stand Up! serie of bronze sculptures carries political and social dimensions. The title is open for interpretation. In this work, Khaled attempts to expose the power of all kinds to those within every human being. It also criticizes the stalemate in which everyone lives in the face of what surrounds him and the silence that turns him into a partner in the continuation of this reality. Work continues on this collection, through other varieties that include new elements in addition to the character and chair.