Art is a mirror of our feelings & a witness of history… Beautiful Art is reflecting how you feel differently and writing down history strongly! That is how I can describe Hilda Hiary artworks especially in her latest series ‘Impulses I” and “Impulses II”.
Born in Jordan in 1969, Hilda Hiary graduated from Amman’s Al Zaytoonah University with a BA in Fine Arts in 2004. Prior to receiving her academic training, she had exhibited as a self-taught artist for nearly a decade. Since the mid 1990s, she has been featured in solo and group shows in the Middle East, Europe, the US and Asia, while contributing to symposiums, festivals, workshops and biennales. Although primarily a painter, she has also produced a number of video works and installations, several of which have been exhibited internationally. Hiary is the recipient of many awards, most notably an honorable mention from the Asian Art Biennale in Bangladesh and first prize for installation art from the Cairo International Biennale.
In her series “Impulses” Hilda uses strong colors, patterns & large figures to maximize delivering an idea and emotions, effected by the events and drastic changes the Middle East is witnessing since last year that has moved the region into a new era. What captivated me in Hilda’s paintings is anyone can feel a link to it. For example “The Map” she outlines a woman’s figure from her upper lip down to her breast but somehow wrapped and can’t move, also the only figure that is clearly showing is her red lips. When I look at this artwork on an incomplete woman -which is my favorite- I see a captured beautiful human trying to release himself from all restrictions which are wrapped around him & seizing his/her impulses of freedom. But after reading its name, it could mean the map authorities draw to maybe seize our movements, defining the ‘allowed’ locations within it. That is what I mean by one can interpret and link to the painting in a way or another, you won’t feel disconnected from any of her artworks. Hilda mastered utilizing symbolism and realism to captivate you within it.
Another element in Hilda’s paintings that I love is although some are very obvious, there is something mysterious! She is trying to deliver hidden messages that keeps you wondering! What does she mean with ‘Tarboosh’? Is she trying to show men supreme on women?! Or is she a woman dressed as a man?! Why is there a cut body in ‘Follower’?! And who is following who?! In ‘Spit’ who is he/she spitting at, the media or leaders or false promises of both?! And in ‘Determination’ with one leg and no arms, obviously she is strongly determined to reach her goals. The mysterious element adds up to Hilda’s artworks, because every time you will look at them in different way. She is painting pain with beauty.
Unfortunately I missed both the exhibitions, but I am impressed with such artworks that I still find something new as if it is the first time I look at them! I will make sure I don’t miss out any upcoming exhibitions by Hilda Hiary because I am sure seeing them live will feel differently, more touched and connected to them. And I would like to take the opportunity of posting this to wish Hilda a Happy Birthday, which was yesterday, and may she have a lovely healthy life among her loved ones.