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‘Homeless Artists’ share concerns with performance art

“I hear you,” said Arts and Culture Minister Yumna Maumoon.



A group of Maldivian artists shared their concerns with the authorities last Thursday with an attention-grabbing piece of performance art.

Titled ‘Homeless Artists,’ complaints and pleas were painted on the body of a young man who stood outside the National Art Gallery in the capital Malé with a bag and tin can.

The performance symbolised “the plight of the sidelined artists community of the Maldives,” according to the Fine Arts Maldives association.

Local artists generally lack means or support and an exhibition at the National Art Gallery is one of the few venues available to showcase their work.

The chief concern of the group was the state of the gallery, which “ought to have a display of paintings and art depicting the evolution of the culture and tradition of the country, and is a community space for artists, aspiring students of the arts and the general public to gather in and hold conversations and discussions about the arts.”

But the “poorly designed building” in Sultan Park was “ill-suited” for such purposes. The artists also objected to the renting out of the space for “events that are not related in any way to the arts.”

Their message was delivered to its intended recipient.

“I hear you and we are working on your concerns about the Art Gallery,” Arts and Culture Minister Yumna Maumoon tweeted on Friday.