Published September 24th, 2006 - 11:25 GMT

Renowned Bahraini photographer Deyana Ahmadi will be exhibiting a special collection of her work in Paris next week with support from Gulf Air.

Initiated by the Bahrain Museum and hosted by the Institute du Monde Arabe, the exhibition, which will be open from 25 September to 5 November 2006, will showcase Bahrain's rich and diverse culture, heritage and history.

Entitled Bahrain: Retrovision, the expo features a collection of mounted photographs Deyana shot over the past 17 years and, a series of dynamic slideshows with a broader range of work, complemented by music. The theme Retrovision evolves from the premise that the present can only be understood in relation to the past.

"Gulf Air, as the national airline of Bahrain and Oman, seizes every opportunity to promote its owner countries' profile abroad, especially by showcasing local talent," says Gulf Air Vice President Marketing and Sales Lee Shave.

“Deyana's photographic and creative talents are well known and what better opportunity can there be than presenting Bahrain through her lens to a Paris audience at this prestigious venue."

The Bahraini artist graduated from St Mary’s College in Los Angeles and completed a fine arts degree in photography from Art Centre College of Design in Pasadena, California.

"I believe that photography provides a visual literature for our surroundings. It serves to document and transcribe history, deconstructing and reinventing legends and myths,” says Deyana.

“By revealing personal memories and images of my environment, I try to reveal the subtleties and hidden messages that allow for the re-examination of our heritage."

Returning to Bahrain in 1987, she established Ahmadi Photography and has since worked with several local and international companies on major corporate, industrial and advertising assignments in addition to select private commissions, advertising campaigns, print publications, country profiles and other publications.

Deyana has a portfolio of some 40,000 photographs of Bahrain on diverse topics - a veritable source of visual inventory on the history and heritage of the country.

The Institute du Monde Arabe, where the exhibition is being held, is probably one of the best venues worldwide, which attracts more than one million visitors a year, making it one of the ten most visited places in Paris.

Inaugurated in November 1987 by former French President, François Mitterand, the Institute is a multi-cultural collaboration between France, and 22 countries representing the Pan Arab world with an objective to disseminate and cultivate knowledge and understanding of the Arab world, its language and civilisation in France and the greater international community through cultural exchange, communication and interaction between France and the Arab world.

About Gulf Air
Founded in 1950, Gulf Air, owned by the Kingdom of Bahrain and the Sultanate of Oman, is the only truly Pan Gulf carrier in the Middle East region.

The regional, geographic and cultural values that the airline has embraced over more than half a century are still central to defining its brand and service ethos.

Today the airline’s network stretches from Europe to Asia and covers 50 cities in 30 countries. The fleet comprises 34 aircraft and has the distinct advantage of possessing the strongest network across the Middle East.

A platform for sustained commercial operation has been established over the past three years as part of a multi-phased turnaround programme. It has also provided a framework for a succession of innovative products and services including the unique Sky Chefs and Sky Nannies that form part of Gulf Air’s ’smart airline, successful business’ vision.

International recognition has been achieved as a result of the turnaround programme leading to numerous awards for the airline’s innovative and high quality products and services: These include:
• Best Onboard Catering in First and Business Class (Skytrax World Airline Catering Awards 2005)
• Best designed in-flight magazine (American Creativity Awards,2005)
• Middle East Leading First Class Airline (World Travel Awards 2005)
• World’s Leading Airport Lounge (World Travel Awards 2005)
• Middle East & North African Platinum Best Airline (MENA Travel Awards 2004
• Most Improved Airline (Skytrax Awards 2004)
• Middle East First Class Airline (Arabian Business Awards)
• Best new product launch for in-flight services (PAX international Readership Awards)
• Best First Class Onboard Food (Skytrax Food Category 2004)
• Best Business Class Check-in (Skytrax Check-in Category 2004)
• Middle East region’s best airport restaurant for its restaurant in Bahrain International Airport lounge (PAX International Readership Awards 2005)


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