Art Jameel and Gulf Photo Plus announce the return of the popular photography event, GPP Slidefest, to Saudi Arabia

The event allows emerging photographers in the region to collaborate, experiment and develop new techniques. (Photo/Supplied)
Updated 21 September 2019

Art Jameel and Gulf Photo Plus announce the return of the popular photography event, GPP Slidefest, to Saudi Arabia

  • GPP Slidefest provides a platform for photographers of all levels to learn, experiment and celebrate the art of photography
  • A special portfolio review session will allow photographers and artists to benefit from the experience of industry professionals

JEDDAH: Works by five local and regional-based photographers will be on show as part of the second Saudi edition of GPP Slidefest, a platform that aims to develop the Kingdom’s growing interest in photography as an art form.

Art Jameel, the heritage, education and arts organization, on Wednesday said that the event, to be held in partnership with Dubai-based Gulf Photo Plus, will allow emerging photographers in the region to collaborate, experiment and develop new techniques.

Projects by Saudi photographers Iman Al-Dabbagh and Abdulsalam Alamri, Kuwaiti photographers Huda Abdulmughni and Mohammed Al-Kouh, and GPP Co-Director and Dubai-based Tanzanian photographer Mohammed Somji will be on show at the event, which begins on Friday, Sept. 27.

GPP Slidefest was launched in 2017 as part of Photography Jameel’s annual program, which focuses on year-round learning and community development with workshops, portfolio reviews
 and talks.

In addition to GPP Slidefest, Art Jameel and Gulf Photo Plus have partnered to present a portfolio review session on Saturday, Sept. 28, which will allow photographers and artists to meet with industry professionals for one-on-one sessions to share their work and receive feedback, advice and exchange ideas.

Photographers Al-Dabbagh and Al-Kouh will provide feedback in both English and Arabic, while Lola Boatwright, managing director of Gulf Photo Plus, and Mohammed Somji, director of Seeing Things and co-director of Gulf Photo Plus, will provide feedback in English.

The portfolio review sessions will run from 1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. with individual sessions lasting 15 minutes. 

Interested photographers can meet with as many industry professionals as they like, and reviews will be scheduled on a first-come, first-serve basis.

Antonia Carver, director of Art Jameel, said the organization’s focus on photography began through its photography award, which “has organically transformed into a grassroots program of workshops, talks and events for photographers across Saudi Arabia.”

Somji said: “Slidefest brings together a myriad of compelling photography projects that help to start conversations, enlighten us about social issues in our region and inspire other photographers to work on stories that matter to them.

“Together with Art Jameel, we held our first international Slidefest in Jeddah one year ago, and have since taken the event to Cairo and Manama, making it a region-wide event. We are honored to return to Jeddah with our friends and partners Art Jameel.”

GPP Slidefest is free to the public and will begin on Sept. 27 in Beydoun Space at 8:30 p.m.


A day in Elton John’s life: Buy Rolls, write hit song, dine with Ringo

Updated 19 October 2019

A day in Elton John’s life: Buy Rolls, write hit song, dine with Ringo

  • Diary entries helped jog Elton John’s memories from his 50-year career
  • ‘Even when I was doing a lot of drugs, I still carried on playing music’

LONDON: When Elton John was working on his new autobiography, the legendary singer, songwriter and performer pulled out diaries he had been encouraged to write during a stint in rehab.
One entry read like this: “Got up, tidied the house, bought a Rolls Royce, had dinner, wrote ‘Candle in the Wind,’ had dinner with Ringo Starr,” the musician said. “That was one day.”
John, 72, spoke in a video interview provided to Reuters by his publisher, Henry Holt & Co., to promote the release of his book, which is titled simply “Me.”
The diary entries helped jog John’s memories from his 50-year career filled with hit records, Grammy awards and royal friendships but also addiction and a suicide attempt two days before a show at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles.
“I wanted to show the tough ride of being a successful artist, and how I went through tough times, and how I came out at the end and got my life together,” John said. “It’s the story of my life up to the present day, warts and all.”
In the book, the “Crocodile Rock” singer revealed recent health scares including a near-fatal infection and a serious bout with appendicitis. “I did like 10 or 11 shows, 24 flights, with a burst appendix,” he said.
John is currently in the middle of a lengthy “Farewell Yellow Brick Road” world tour that will bring his touring career to an end. In the interview, he said performing on stage “just never gets old.”
“I never go on stage late,” he said. “I just love to get out there and I’m raring to go.”
“Even when I was doing a lot of drugs, I still carried on playing music,” he added. “It’s been my touchstone of my whole life.”
A highlight, John said, came in 1975 when John Lennon joined him to perform three songs at Madison Square Garden. It was Lennon’s first appearance on stage in New York since the Beatles played Shea Stadium.
Lennon was so nervous that he vomited before the performance, John said. “He came out to probably the most touching ovation I’ve ever heard,” John said. “We all shed a tear on stage.”
John said he is not sure what his future holds but he is still writing songs.
“I don’t know what’s next and I don’t want to know what’s next,” he said. “I’m just ready for the next chapter.”