Yazid Oulab for the first-ever Islamic Arts Biennale 

From 23 January to 23 May 2023

Jeddah, Saudi Arabia

Yazid Oulab participates in this artistic and cultural event to be held in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, from January 23 to May 23, 2023. 

Yazid Oulab, Algerian artist, presents two distinct series in the framework of the biennial of Islamic arts.
The first series, entitled “Les Orants Habités Par Leur Espace I-VI” (1998), is composed of works on paper representing kneeling, standing and prostrate figures. Made with olive oil, these works give off an aura similar to a radiance, in amber tones. They evoke rootedness and incarnation, with motifs reminiscent of tree rings.

The second series, ink drawings on paper, is entitled “Elevation, On Line 1, On Line 2, Meditation 2, Resonance 1, Resonance 2” (2006). These drawings are characterized by repetitive lines and brushstrokes, creating abstract gatherings of seemingly solitary devotees.


The theme of the biennial, entitled “Awwal Bayt” (First Home), highlights how the Ka’bah and the Prophet’s Mosque in Medina create a sense of belonging among Muslims around the world, in reference to their own homes (bayt). The exhibition is divided into two distinct parts. The inner part will focus on the sacred direction (qiblah), which represents the prayer towards the Ka’bah, while the outer part will be dedicated to the migration (hijrah), evoking the Prophet Muhammad’s journey from Mecca to Medina. 

The biennial showcases the art and creativity of Islamic culture, both in the past and in the present.

The location of the biennale, also known as the Canopy Terminal, will be a 70,000 square meter purpose-built space that will include facilities such as exhibition spaces, a theater, a mosque, workshops, classrooms dedicated to programming, as well as retail and restaurant space. This initiative by the Diriyah Biennale Foundation aims to promote Islamic culture and establish Jeddah as a center of art and creativity.

Artist info