Dia al-Azzawi in front of the final tapestry installed at the Ashmolean © courtesy the Artist
Factum Arte has worked with Iraqi artist Dia al-Azzawi to recreate a 2017 drawing into a large 10m-wide tapestry for the exhibition 'Painting Poetry' at the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford (December 15, 2022 - June 11, 2023). The display is the artist's first major solo exhibition in the UK.
Mosul: Panorama of Destruction started as a black-and-white drawing on paper inspired by the tragic events occurred in Iraq during the rise of the Islamic State. The artwork is part of a series about Iraq called Land of Darkness that detaches from his signature style of vivid colours, which often include elements of Arabic calligraphy or references to Mesopotamic mythology. Panorama of Destruction is made of coarse inked strokes on paper, and the qualities of al-Azzawi's penmanship were one of the features that Factum Arte was able to replicate in tapestry form.
The sections of the original drawing were digitally stitched together at Factum Arte's digital studio. The processed file was woven at Flanders Tapestries in Belgium using a mix of cotton, acrylic, wool and Trevira CS.
The original drawing, digitally stitched together © courtesy of the Artist
Installation view at the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford © courtesy of the Artist
Installation view at the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford © Anthony Dawton