“Mulayya” is an old folk song sung by our ancestors in their travels to express their sad and happy feelings and it is well known for being related to social, economic and political status. The melody of Mulayya originated from the banks of the Euphrates many years ago, and ever since, it has been a faithful companion to the tribes and inhabitants of that area; The texts are a mix of slang poetry, based on the simplest meters of the Arabic poetry ”al-basit”. The songs of Mulayya were built on the Bayat and Nahawand melody types, and are usually accompanied by frame drums. Two cities, in particular, were popular with this kind of singing, “al-Raqqa”, and “Deir al-Zor”. These cities that once were well known for their rich and diverse culture and for the suggestive music of their tribes are the same ones that are now being ravaged by war and have become miserable symbols of brutality.
“Umm al-zuluf”, the most popular of these songs, is usually echoed by the tribes who transport their goods through deserts and mountains and is dedicated to the Mesopotamian godness of fertility and love: Ishtar. Due to its length, it was the best companion for the long journey of these tribes who celebrates the Akitu, the spring Babylonian festival.
My experience with music made me rediscover my country’s rich musical heritage, the one I got to know when I was young but that I never really listened to. My ancestors’ words of love and generosity, reminiscence and separation that summarized in melodies times of destruction and prosperity, seem now to describe so well what we are facing today: destruction, sadness, hard work and sometimes, even happiness.
In my Current exhibition “Um al-zuluf” I am trying to celebrate the life of the tribes of this area and their beautiful music and culture, which is now the only advocate for the sad Euphrates.
المولية هي نوع من أنواع الغناء الشعبي القديم و لها ارتباط كبير بالواقع الاجتماعي و الاقتصادي و السياسي ,حيث كان الاجداد يستعينون بها على اسفارهم و يعبرون عن مشاعرهم الحزينة أو السعيدة على حد سواء. خُصَّتْ المولية بمنطقة حوض الفرات في سورية و كانت الرفيقة الدائمة لضفافه و سكانه من القبائل و اعتمدت على الشعر العامي الذي يُنظّم على شكل أربعة أسطر على البحر البسيط ,و تُغنّى على مقام البيات و النهاوند و يَعزف المغنون أنفسهم على الدفوف ,اشتهرت مدينة الرقة و دير الزور بهذا النوع من الغناء ,و هي المدن التي دمرتها الحرب و شوهتها و حولتها الى اخطر بقاع الارض بعد ان كانت عامرة بأرضها الخصبة و قبائلها و صياديها و موسيقاها.
"ام الزلف" هي اغنية تغنى مطولاً عند القيام بأعمال تحتاج الى وقت طويل أيام تسيير القوافل عبر الصحاري و الجبال ,و تعني الآلهة "عشتار" آلهة الخصب في الحضارات القديمة في منطقة الرافدين,كما كانت تُغنّى هذه الأغنية احتفالاً بعيد الربيع في شهر آذار . في معرضي الحالي "إم الزلف" أسرد مشاهداً مختلفة لحياة القبائل و سكان مدن الفرات, و موسيقاهم الجميلة فالمولية باتت اليوم هويّة الفرات الحزينة.
تجربتي الموسيقية جعلتني اكتشف تراثنا القديم الذي كنا نسمعه من دون اصغاء فالحب و الكرم و الاستذكار و الحزن على الفراق ما هي إلا رسائل من اجدادنا تلخص ازمنة من الدمار و الازدهار من السعادة و الحزن و العمل الشاق ,اريد فقط ان اذّكر نفسي بخصالنا القديمة خوفاً على فقدانها للأبد في زمن الحرب.
Aegean Sea بحر ايجه
From my brother’s story who filled a boat with his body and went far away for a new hope surrounded by whales, to smugglers who create creative ways to fill our bodies in tanks of chocolates and oil. About our choices that became rare, destiny that became like that of a fisherman who throws his hook in a sea of memories hoping his bate will catch possessing thread of power, or a suitcase to emigrate as far as you can get in this world, a bullet to kill or get killed by, or an empty bottle to lock and isolate yourself in. All you have to do is make a that suites you, because the sweetest of them choices is still bitter
Beirut Art Fair 2017
Beirut Art Fair 2016
" Walking on Thread " مشي على خيط
An Exhibition By Mohamad Khayata At 392RMEIL393 from 20th of November to 5 January 2016 Lebanon - Beirut
" Sketches "
an Exhibition by 2 Artists Mohamad Khayata Ahmad Naffory
inside Beirut داخل بيروت
At The Gallerist gallery
" Bits & Pieces " Exhibition اجزاء و قطع
an exhibition by Syrian artist Mohamad Khayata and the Lebanese designer Ghina Sibaii. Starting from Khayata’s memories of his mother making a patch work “ Madeh “ out of pieces of different fabrics and transforming it from an act of labor to an act of art was the starting point of the union of these two artists. ‘Bits and pieces ‘is what life is. It is our individuality gathered as quilt work. Khayata portrays in a visual language symbols of what went on in Syria, combining stories and memories like a patched work stitched and tied to a canvas. From the portrait of a man wrapped in a patched quilt made of memories to another one disappearing into a patched quilt holding a suitcase in preparation to leave behind hisworld, to having a drink to what was once a country and a home. His art exceeded the limit of a canvas and surpass it to human figures, a map to the so-called “Arab World”, to a chair , all shaped from broken pieces of glass representing stories of nostalgia,fear,war and the manipulation of power. The artists started from a captured moment, sketched it and finally gave birth to an entity painted on a canvas full of personal memories, feelings and passions to make visual the unspoken words.
Working with a wide range of media, gathering different materials such as broken glass, decayed wood, and simply collecting elements from flea markets, Khayata and Sibaii do not impose on the subject but rather make the elements evolve and reshape themselves to become a newborn entity. Every piece displayed in this exhibition is a unique item that cannot be duplicated or cloned because each has a unique existence and a story.