As part of the Oceans Apart exhibition at the International in Slater Street there will be a reception there on Thursday 10 July at 19.00 for the very prominent Jordanian artist, Muhanna El Durra
Muhanna Al-Durra is the pioneer in Jordanian visual arts as he was the first to introduce cubist and abstract art into the Jordanian art field.
He was born in Amman, Jordan in 1938, and graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts, Rome, Italy.
In 1964, Al-Durra established the Fine Arts Section at the Department of Culture and Art, Amman, and then established the Jordan Institute of Fine Arts in 1970, serving as is first director. Al-Durra is the first Jordanian to receive formal art education, and the first Jordanian to establish an art studio which he also used to teach students. He served as an ambassador of the Arab League.
Currently, he is a professor at the Faculty of Fine Art and Design at Jordan University as well as the president of the Association of Fine Arts, Jordan.
Durra held numerous solo exhibitions in Rome, Florence, the USSR, various Arab and European capitals, Washington D.C., Plazzo Venezia, the 1988 Venice Biennale Exhibition, and the Fine Arts National Museum of Valetta, Malta. More recently he held solo exhibitions in Moscow, Saint Petersburg, the Jordan National Gallery of Fine Arts and the Austrian Parliament Central Hall in Vienna.
Durra’s work is represented in various national and international collections, including that of the Vatican, the Imperial Court of Japan, the President of the Philippines, Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau of Canada, David Rockefeller, The Jordan National Gallery of Fine Arts, Fanimay Bank in Washington, D.C., Bonn City Hall, Washington, D.C. City Hall, the University of San Francisco, Georgetown University, as well as several Jordanian institutes.
Durra is also the recipient of several prestigious awards:
1965 Decorated Knight of the Holy Order of San Silvestro by His Holiness Pope Paul VI
1970 Awarded Al Kawkab decoration by H.M. King Hussein
1977 The first State Appreciation Award for his contribution to the cultural development of Jordan
1978 Golden Medal of the Italian Ministry of Cultural Heritage
1980 Golden Pioneer Medal and Appreciation Award of the Union of Arab Artists
1992 Elected active member of the International Informatization Academy
2006 Order of the Star of Italian Solidarity
In November 2006, the Ministry of Culture honored Muhanna Durra by naming an art gallery after him and holding a national symposium about his art, with the participation of prominent Jordanian artists and art critics.