Born in 1974, Damascus, Syria.
Lives and works in Canada and Syria.
Buthayna was born in Damascus in 1974. After studying Fine Arts at the University of Damascus, Syria, Buthayna moved to Paris for her graduate studies to obtain a Diploma in painting from the Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-arts of Paris (ENSB–A) along with a Masters degree (DEA) in History of Islamic Art from Paris IV Sorbonne, Paris. Since 2011 Buthayna has been working as Professor on the faculty of Fine Arts at the University of Damascus.
Besides her academic activities, she is a practicing artist. Thematically Buthayna focuses on contradictions by getting closer to the society and its states, as well as its concerns and inconsistencies. By images, signs and objects, she critiques the socio-political dimensions of imposed cultural conventions. Using abstraction she is trying to bring her audience closer to the work and in order to create opportunities for audience interactions.
Buthayna Ali had several solo exhibitions, among which were I’m Ashamed, Green art Gallery (Dubai 2009), We, AlRywak Gallery (Damascus 2006), Promises, Atassi Gallery (Damascus 2003), Tent, National Museum (Damascus 2002). Recently she participated in several group exhibitions Ca’Corner della Regina (Venice 2011), The Art of writing – Pictures are written (Wiesbaden 2011), exhibition Told|Untold|Retold Arab Museum of Modern Art (Doha 2010). Connecting her academic activities and passion for art Buthayna participates in different workshops and lectures.
I am not myself, not Buthayna Ali, not a body, not a woman, not a Muslim, not a Syrian, not an Arab...
many prisons forces itself upon me.
They are combined in me, melting me, turning me into hard and fluid forms.
Hard to defend my existence, while fluid to escape, through my work, away from those jails.
One Day I had to choose my purpose, I chose art.
When I stood up,
I was standing on a ground full of needles.
But my femininity shouted colors.
Full of blood and damage, full of repetition and stability,
full of hate and only words for love.
I stated my career as a painter.
But painting was not enough for me to deliver my messages.
Being aware that art has taken over traditions and has set its tools free, I recognized that I was chained.
So why not to take the advantages of this new artistic path, to convey my thoughts, and to interact with my viewers!
It was then that I understood that I was a mother,
They tried to veil my womb,
But I begat! I begat kids! That can´t be executed.
Not by politics, by religion, nor by money.
My work is me.
Its´s my existence, identity, memory, contradictions, screams, my words and my questions. My materials are any optical element, any media that is available and is acceptable for the work of art.
2009. I’m Ashamed installation. Bastakiya Art Fair. Dubai: Green art Gallery. UAE.
2006. We installation. Damascus: AlRywak Gallery. Syria.
2003. Promises installation. Damascus: Atassi Gallery. Syria.
2002. Tent installation. Damascus: National Museum. Syria.
2002. Bedouin painting. Angers: Caisse d’Epargne Gallery. France.
2001. Tent installation. Paris: Mozart Park. France.
Selected group exhibitions:
2011. Ca' Corner della Regina. Venice: Fondazione Prada. Italy.
2011. The Art of writing. Pictures are written. Wiesbaden. Germany.
2010. Told| Untold| Retold. Doha: Arab Museum of Modern Art. Qatar.
2010. Arabicity. Beirut. Lebanon.
2010. Sharing Waters - sauna meets hamam. Istanbul. Turkey.
2009. The Other shadow of the city. Jerusalem. Palestine.
2009. Pictorial Mappings of Islam and Modernity. Taswir. Berlin: Martin-Gropius-Bau. Germany.
2008. 11th Cairo Biennale. Cairo. Egypt.
2008. 3rd Glow festival. Forum of light and architecture with Bayan AlSheikh.
2008. Traversées. ArtParis. Paris. France.
2007. Dar Kalemat Gallery. Aleppo: Dar Kalemat Gallery. Syria.
2007. Darat AlFunun. Amman: Darat AlFunun. Jordan.
2007. 10th Istanbul Biennale. Istanbul. Turkey.
2007. Sexy Souks. Point Ephémère organized by the Maison des Cultures du Monde–Paris. France.
2006. Europe art exhibition. Geneva. Switzerland.
2004. Brunei Gallery. London: Brunei Gallery. UK.
2000. Syrian Cultural Centre. With Pierre Al-Maari. Paris: Syrian Cultural Centre. France.
2011. Why!. Doha: Arab Museum of Modern Art. Qatar.
2010. I’m Ashamed. Doha: Arab Museum of Modern Art. Qatar.
2008. Examples. Paris: Enrico Navarra Gallery. France.
2008. We, Nous. Darat Al-Funun Foundation. Jordan.
2008. Private Collections. Syria, France, Canada, USA.
Selected lectures / Workshops:
2011. Word. Workshop leader. Doha: Arab Museum of Modern Art. Qatar.
2011. Cubes. Kids workshop leader. Doha: Arab Museum of Modern Art. Qatar.
2010. Arab International University. Lecture. Damascus: Arab International University, Faculty of Architecture. Syria.
2007. Faculty of Fine Art. Workshop leader. Damascus. Syria.
2007. 10th Istanbul Biennial. Panel Discussion. Istanbul. Turkey.
2004. Goethe institute. Video Art. Lecture. Damascus. Syria.
2003. Goethe institute. Workshop leader. Damascus. Syria.
2009. I’m Ashamed. Exhibition brochure. Damascus. Syria.
2007. Buthayna Ali 1999-2007. Damascus. Syria.
2006. We, Nous. 2006. Exhibition brochure – Damascus. Syria.
2003. Promises. Exhibition brochure – Damascus. Syria.
2011. Exhibition catalogue of Ca' Corner della Regina. Venice: Fondazione Prada. Italy.
2011. Exhibition catalogue of The Art of writing. Pictures are written.Wiesbaden. Germany.
2010. Exhibition catalogue of Told| Untold| Retold. Doha: Arab Museum of Modern Art. Qatar.
2010. Exhibition catalogue of Arabicity. Beirut. Lebanon.
2010. Exhibition catalogue of Sharing Waters sauna meets hamam. Istanbul. Turkey.
2009. New Vision: Arab Contemporary Art in the 21st Century. Catalogue of Taswir. Pictorial Mappings of Islam and Modernity Berlin: Martin Gropius-Bau. Germany.
2008. Catalogue of 11th Cairo biennial. Cairo. Egypt.
2008. Catalogue of 10th ArtParis. Paris. France.
2007. Catalogue of 10th Istanbul Biennale. Istanbul. Turkey.
2007. The professors of the Fine Arts faculty. Exhibition catalogue. Damascus. Syria.
2006. Painting-Professor the Fine Arts faculty. Exhibition catalogue. Damascus. Syria.
2004. Catalogue of Syrian culture week. London. UK.