Sometimes you cross by a truck with a large tree is on its way to an incinerator, or some trees that are over decades old are being demolished and left next to a dump. Sad scenes that may sometimes make you furious, wondering what the guilt of that tree that has been sent to retire in such an agitated manner. Perhaps the one who planted it was not sufficiently cognizant of the problems of planting it.
There, in a vast land at the end of Fahaheel, the air carries between its aromas, the feel of the sea. The sun is near the sunken, and It’s time for the fishermen to return to their homes. Before that, you see them gearing up their fishing kits for another day. Thousands of huge fish traps, most of them are neatly set in a way that attracts attention of transients.
Cemeteries are sacred in all parts of the earth, and for any faith to which the dead belong. Once you enter a graveyard, the dead will impose respect. Hence, you’d walk among them in reverence and caution, without putting a foot except on empty pathways. Even after the weather has obscured the features of the tombs, its prestige holds up in the face of time. I went to a cemetery once to visit my mother and father at Sulaibikhat. But it was the first time I could take pictures of a closed burial ground in the country.
Whether you’re a Kuwaiti or a foreigner have lived the golden period of the country between the seventies and the late nineties, these building names will inevitably mean something to you. Salam Building, Bayt Lothan, Kuwait Airways Building, Al-Sawaber and Pearl Marzouq.
When you enter Bassam Al-Azmi’s farm in Wafra, you will see a pond with large Japanese koi fish swimming gracefully. The pond is surrounded by a beautiful wooden enclosure designed by him. The farm specializes in cucumbers and ornamental aquaculture, and you have cut across the fields to reach the fish farm. The Azmi farm is unique in Kuwait in the cultivation of ornamental fish.
Sabeel Water Fountains
Fountains of Life and Charity on the Streets of Kuwait
You will not die out of thirst in Kuwait. Whether you take the air on your feet or drive your car, free drinking water is distributed to all neighborhoods of Kuwait and its urban areas, which are called in Arabic, Maa’a Sabeel, i.e. the road drinking fountain. What is interesting is that water fountains are covered with large sculptures so that walkers can see them remotely.
Japanese manga and anime have a wide following in Kuwait and the region. One young Kuwaiti writer however has taken his interest in the popular graphic storytelling to a personal level by writing his own manga series, Shinigami Sensei. Published in a series format twice weekly online, Shinigami Sensei combines 27 year old Kuwaiti writer Hisham Najem’s storyline with Indonesian-based artist Hanna Philip’s drawings for a unique and distinctly ‘Japanese’ manga narrative.
and the visual art of advertising in Ramadan
On the streets of Kuwait, sidewalks that are supposed to be pedestrianized are crowded by billboards. Some of these are annoying to the extent that we marvel about the fictitious amount of money spent on these campaigns. Some of them make you sympathize with the advertising company due to the money wasted on a bad design. You wish you were personally consulted to offer some advice.
In Ramadan, advertisers compete over advertising spaces in Kuwait. Everyone is trying to add the spirit of Ramadan to their products, from cars to antacids. However, graphic design specialists realize that growth in innovation has not been impressive in the last five years, with advertisers continuing to commit the same technical and designing mistakes, which reflect a lack of knowledge of the visual aspect.
As a journalist for Kuwait Times that covers culture and society, I am impressed by the tenacity of the rising art scene in Kuwait and by the growing spread of culture, artistic events, social gatherings and lectures, collective and personal exhibitions ñ including many that are not supported by official bodies. I admire the courage and dedication of those who dare to show their work, to make their passions come alive. And I am inspired by them to do the same for myself. To accomplish something that has meaning and interest for me personally.
Walking around, a rickety wall caught my eye. Broken glass was embedded at the top to prevent curious people, like myself, from sneaking into the empty yard behind it. However, it was accessible from the beach. On the side of the wall was a closed gate with a sign, smashed in a deliberate manner as if someone wanted to obliterate the memories of the place and its history.
Welcome to what was once called the Gazelle Club.