Bahrain’s Ambassador Sheikh Fawaz at Bahrain Embassy London

October. 2018:  October. 2018L . Sheikh Fawaz bin Mohammed Al Khalifa, Bahrain’s Ambassador to the UK, invites the camera and crew into the embassy for a cuppa and a quick sit down away from politics for now (other than a general overview) and a very proud moment or two relishing artworks at the ‘Penumbra Exhibition’ by fellow Bahraini Rashid Al Khalifa The Artist (who just happens to be Sh. Fawaz’s uncle), on display at the Saatchi Gallery in London’s up market Chelsea.

An unexpected opportunity; when arrived in London, Sh. Fawaz was in Bahrain and not expected to be back so soon. As it happened, he returned to UK the very next day.  Almost the moment he stepped off the plane in London, he drove to Saatchi Gallery in upmarket Sloan Ranger town, Chelsea where we caught him.

Later, showing typical hospitality, a true Bahraini dinner was arranged at the Ambassador’s house for The Artist, the curators and all those involved in this rather magnificent ‘first’, not only for Rashid Al Khalifa, but for Bahrain itself.
Ambassador Sheikh Fawaz then invited the Who DoesWhat TV crew for a cuppa next day.  Our intention was to get his opinion of the art on display, but we embellished the opportunity a little and got a feel for the atmosphere in UK, regarding trade and the likes, with Brexit looming (maybe…..) and The Donald wanting his style trade deals.  Hopefully Bahrain will do well.

As the month of October flashed by, so did the huge number of visitors to the gallery.  Saatchi announcing that this has been one of the most successful displays they have hosted, judging by the sheer number of visitors coming for this exhibition specifically. With that in mind, H.E. Sheikh Fawaz organised two receptions at the gallery; an exclusive viewing inviting Ambassadors, diplomats and dignitaries from other embassies, to be followed by another whereby any Bahrainis in the UK will be welcome.

Just two days before the exhibition was to close and already having been extended, Saatchi has requested that the expo remain for at least another month stating that they have been overwhelmed by so many positive comments from the huge number of visitors from all walks of life which included top art collectors and exhibition organisers popping in to see what all the fuss was about. By design…… small pun intended, an inordinate number of architects have visited with each waxing lyrical about the art and its design. We will be putting out some sound bites soon.

Watch this space.