Omar Abduljawad’s large-scale architectural light installation, Eshroun Thalathoun: Tahawul (Twenty Thirty: Transformation) (2022) is an embodiment to Saudi Arabia’s current period of transformation as it pivots from an oil dependent economy to a nation-wide diversification of industry and a shift towards renewables and the vision beyond.
An architect and multidisciplinary artist, Abduljawad is interested in how reality might be expressed through higher dimensional mathematics and sacred geometry. The sculpture visualises the transformation across its monumental scale through a gradient from dark to light. The black of its base paying homage to the discovery of oil in the Kingdom; the white at the top representing the future. Its form is a repetition and scaling of the action of lifting of a cube: the act of one working towards our constructive collective efforts. 12 pillars with the void in the centre creating the thirteenth – represent Saudi’s regions coming together.
While its lights are visible from afar, upon entering further meaning becomes apparent. Visitors enter through nine black pointed arches, which are formed, erupting from the ground and widening to meet are a homage to the discovery of oil and the growth it enabled, while also gesturing to hospitality and welcoming of the nomadic architecture and culture of the region. Looking upwards from inside, while standing on the raw ground we look through the steel, glass and light of modernity, the sculpture grows progressively brighter, framing the limitless sky above. The work stands as a public beacon, a call to build a prosperous future for ourselves, together.