Art of creativity and innovation to create beauty
Zainab Moussa Al-Ali is a 34-year-old Kuwaiti jewelry designer. She holds a diploma in computer programming, but her love for handicrafts since childhood saw her practice crochet at the age of 11, as well as other handworks. In 2013, she learnt the art of manufacturing accessories using special wires on social network sites and by communicating with specialists of this art.
Ali has participated in many exhibitions including A Group of Talents Exhibition, 1000 Projects Exhibition, Al-Kout Complex Exhibition, Ramadaniat Exhibition and lately at Kuwait International Fashion Week 2017. In an exclusive interview with Kuwait Times, Ali had a lot to share and express about her art.
Kuwait Times: Tell us about your art?
Zainab Moussa Al-Ali: I create my artworks from copper wires plated with gold and silver using special tools, precious and semi-precious stones and glass and crystal without using any type of adhesive, welding or fire.
KT: When did you start practicing this kind of art?
Ali: I have practiced crochet since the age of eleven and love handicrafts. I began manufacturing accessories using special wires in 2013.
KT: How did you learn about this art?
Ali: Through social network sites. I communicated with specialists in this field in Britain and learned from them remotely. I asked them to provide me with books and CDs.
KT: Where do you get your inspiration from?
Ali: By reviewing images of masterpieces by specialists in this field and creating new and creative ideas from my imagination.
KT: You collaborated with Kuwaiti designer Rasha Al-Wazzan during the Kuwait International Fashion Week – tell us more about your experience?
Ali: I heard about the international fashion week to be held in Kuwait and met Rasha Al-Wazzan, who was going to participate in this fair and present her designs. I proposed my idea to her to make masks inspired by the Khaliji burqa, as her designs were for abayas, and she liked the idea. My participation in this exhibition saw the best days of my life, as I have always been ambitious and wanted my art to be famous worldwide. Thank God I achieved my dream to participate in the most famous international fashion show in Kuwait.
KT: Why did you choose to showcase masks at KIFW?
Ali: My idea was to elaborate on the Khaliji burqa by fantasia. I was inspired by Kuwaiti heritage, especially since I participated with an abaya designer in the exhibition, so this idea was perfect to go with the clothes.
KT: You also got a chance to have a photo shoot with one of the best photographers in Paris – Japanese photographer Nahoko Spiess – in collaboration with other international designers during KIFW. How did this make you feel?
Ali: I was very happy as my masks attracted the admiration of many international designers who participated in this exhibition, and I was honored to take pictures with them to exhibit my creations on their distinguished designs.
KT: What materials do use in your masks?
Ali: I use copper wires plated with gold and silver, crystal, beads, chains, fabrics and strips.
KT: How much time does it take to make one mask?
Ali: Three to four days as per the type of design and the time available.
KT: How would you describe your artwork in one word or phrase?
Ali: The art of creativity and innovation to create beauty.
KT: Do you make jewelry as well?
Ali: Yes, I design necklaces, earrings, bracelets and rings.
KT: What are the materials that you use for the jewelry?
Ali: I use copper wires plated with silver, gold and other colors, as well as special tools. I also use precious and semi-precious stones, crystal and glass.
KT: What is the name of your brand and why did you choose this name?
Ali: Victorina. I chose this name because I learnt this art from specialists in Britain. Also, I love the era of Victoria Queen, which witnessed luxury clothes. The word “Victorina” is a comprehensive word for all kinds of designs and decorations common in the Victorian era.
KT: Your masks are more like pieces of art – each and every one has its own soul and identity. Do you think they are wearable or only meant for display?
Ali: Yes, some masks are wearable, but not all are for display. You can wear them at special events.
KT: Where are you going to exhibit your masks and jewelry next?
Ali: I will show my creations to designers to give them an idea of this type of creative and new design in the world of accessories, through my participation in exhibitions and social network sites.
KT: Any future plans?
Ali: My next plan is expansion and development in this field from Kuwait to the Gulf and then the wider world, creating new ideas in the world of accessories.
By Sahar Moussa