Ablow Arif

Ablow Arif is a self-taught artist although he did attend LaSalle, Singapore for a foundation course in fine art in the early '90s. Although Arif hasn't exhibited his work in the Maldives except a few times, he has contributed his artwork to various design and illustration projects including children's books. Perhaps from all the artists represented in New Contemporaries, Arif's work is most obscure. Partly this is so because it has never been exhibited in a public space in the country, nor viewed in its entirety - as a series of works with a specific context evolving over time. Stylistically, there is a sense if intense brooding which can be read as a subtext to the sometimes skillful draftsmanship exercised in conveying human and animal forms and impressions of urban and somewhat claustrophobic physical spaces and structures. Arif is accomplished in handling various water and oil based media. However, most of the works included in the present exhibitions are digitally produced and printed on canvas. Even in these works which were all produced within the last decade, one can sense a strong undercurrent of the more murky aspects of life in an increasingly urbanizing island - Male'.