14 March 2013
When I was sitting in the brown book offices having my first meeting with the Venice Biennale internship team, listening to the people introducing themselves to the cultural attaché Dr. Alessandra Priante I was quite nervous, not because I had nothing to say but because I felt a bar was raised, most of them were artists or involved in the art field in some way while I wasn’t. When It was my turn I said, My name is Mohammed Jassim Al Serkal, I am 24 years old currently living in Sharjah, I work as a marketing executive at Shurooq which is the Sharjah investment and development authority, at that moment every single person was listening to what I had to say, to what I believe is a true representation of who I am that definitely pushed me to speak louder, as a marketing executive I have to challenge creativity and how to capture people’s attention by providing the right artwork to the right audience, I feel that this creative move reassured myself of belonging to this prestigious internship. I also explained that my family has been involved in the art scene, as my younger sister and cousin are true artists in their own right, I believe every artist has a story to interpret and it’s our job as humans to visualize the story in a meaningful way.
Every person has a skill or talent, being an artist for some is a skill turned into business and some into a hobby kept as one. We have to explain 3 things about ourselves whether a talent or a skill that people including our prominent interns didn’t know about ourselves. One of the things that I didn’t explain to the interns in that I am a creative writer, I enjoy writing and have been doing so since grade 4, which is a while ago. It definitely escalated into more of storytelling I felt this hobby refreshes my creative side as I always try to push the boundaries on what to write and how to interpret that. My second information that I will share is that I am beginning to have this new passion for photography, I just pick my phone up and take pictures of random objects, which sounds kind of a lame excuse of an Instagram-aholic but it is definitely not, I have been taking pictures since 2003, and still consider myself an amateur and its purely because I don’t invest time into it as much as for example equestrian riding (because I used to invest my time in the sport), but you never know anything can happen and I am getting support. My third and final confession into this Oprah inspired column is that I am a cook at heart, I am infatuated with food, how I see food is the same way an artist sees a Picasso painting and yes I went to that exaggerated limit, but I am a true cook without the skills, though I would definitely love to learn and understand how recipes surround each other and I will in the future.
How I define art in 3 ways? What it really means to me?
Art is an exploration to the creative side in the back of your hard skull. It violates your senses and releases an emotion to a realization of that particular story. In storytelling, as an enthusiast writer, we create a path for people to jump on and swift you to that yellow brick road of creativity, imagine, and elaborate your mind to a specific journey, while a painter will give you that same idea but without the words just an image and maybe sometimes from that image you will design a story to fit your emotion.
Why I chose to apply to Venice internship program?
I always try to challenge myself to explore new curves in life, and a challenge to me is anything outside my comfort zone, not necessarily that I don’t enjoy it but because a challenge to me is a learning experience, it could be fun, it could be great, but it will definitely be informational. The Venice internship program to me is more than just art literature but is the exploration of multiple hidden challenges that trigger a specific adrenaline of knowledge. I enjoy learning from the different cultures, from the art, the artist, the food, the lifestyle and much more. To me Venice internship program is much more than art, its growth.
Assumptions I have about Venice, and Italy + Italians?
I cannot assume to the point of believing in that assumption, I personally never assume or wish to avoid it because it raises a level of expectation that probably you don’t want to be surprised with. I believe Italy is a beautiful country that is veiled with surprises, from their warm culture to their even warmer meals. I expect to enjoy Venice because whenever I travel to a new place I always find something that fits what I enjoy doing. Venice is a place of exquisite architecture, brilliant hospitality and endless hidden secrets through the alleys. People try to avoid getting lost in Venice, not in my case, Ill enjoy being lost in the city of masks.