Hirst, Mid-East Masters Display in Doha

Doha, Qatar -- A work of art by the best known YBA artist Damien Hirst is to be offered for sale at Sotheby's, on 13th October 2014, along with some important contemporary Muslim art.

Art collectors of ArtKabinett social media network see catapulting prices in contemporary artworks by some Mid-East superstars.

Carrying a price estimate of $1,000,000–1,500,000 'Tranquility', pictured here. explores the subject of the struggle between life and death. Hirst's butterfly works are described by the auction house as 'a testament to his ability to celebrate the complexities of the human experience by combining his most famous concepts into one canvas'.

The work is constructed and executed using thousands of dead butterflies. It captures the manifestation of the most subliminal fear in human existence: that of death. Like the beating of butterfly wings, the canvas breathes life into the room.

The title evokes both the tranquil state that is produced by being in the presence of such beauty as well as the state of the butterflies themselves, says the auction house cataloguer.

Following last year’s record-breaking sale of Arab and Iranian and International Contemporary Art in Doha - in which nine artist records were achieved - this year’s sale features artworks of the highest calibre that corresponds to the demand from both Middle Eastern and International collectors.

Contemporary Muslim Masters

Works on view include sought-after masterpieces by some of today’s most celebrated artists from the region, including Ali Banisadr, Ayman Baalbaki and Monir Farmanfarmaian.

Internationally acclaimed and highly sought-after artist Ali Banisadr was born in Iran in 1976 and his work is heavily influenced by his childhood experiences as a refugee of the Iran-Iraq war.

His work is dominated by large-scale fantastical abstract landscapes that convey something of the chaotic violence he witnessed as a child.

Drawing on both Eastern and Western artistic traditions, Banisadr’s work recalls both the startling complexity of Persian miniatures and the wide-ranging landscapes of the Flemish Old Masters.

The effect of this technique is vividly rendered in his outstanding painting The Chase (est. $180,000-250,000), where the juxtaposition of meticulous detail with looser brushstrokes creates a mesmerizing whole that draws the viewer in to Banisadr’s complex and deeply personal world.

Al Sharq al Awsat (est. $60,000 – 80,000) is a prime example of the extraordinary way in which the Lebanese artist Ayman Baalbaki remembers and depicts Lebanon’s traumatic, war-stricken history.

Born in 1970, the year the Lebanese civil war began, Baalbaki has been a witness to numerous brutal, war-inflicted years in Beirut. Many of the artist’s traumatic experiences have, unsurprisingly, provided the inspiration and subjects behind his most powerful work.

In a personal testimony to his country’s dark past, Baalbaki aspires to break through the “amnesia” his country adopted after the civil war. Emphasizing the powerful imagery of his work are the ravishing colors the artist applies in thick ridges of paint and the juxtaposition of these expressive brushstrokes with floral textiles.

Much like the plane which is depicted – a wreck from the bombing of The Beirut International Airport in 1976 which was left exposed to the public eyes as a martyrdom piece – this work makes one reflect on and remember the atrocities of war.

Three Brothers (est. $70,000–100,000) is an infusion of classical Persian Art and Iran’s traditional crafts techniques with the unique and modern aesthetic of Monir Farmanfarmaian, a pioneer within the contemporary Iranian art world and one of the most important and established Middle Eastern female artists.

A source of great inspiration and reverence for the current generation of Middle Eastern artists, Farmanfarmaian’s artwork draws inspiration from classical Iranian culture and tradition.

Her unique blend of traditional and avant-garde creates an elegantly distinctive style as in this exemplary work where the artist has readapted reverse-glass painting, Khatam kari (inlaid marquetry) and Aineh-kari (mirror mosaics) – both defining decorative features of Persian stately homes and palaces - to create a breathtakingly modern geometric mirror triptych.

Farmanfarmaian constructs a uniquely modern and refined aesthetic by combining traditional Islamic craftsmanship with a highly contemporary delivery, creating an explosion of kaleidoscopic visual harmony.

Colossal Calligraphy

The elegantly fluid movement strikingly apparent within Blue Wave (est. $70,000–100,000) has the distinct skill and uniqueness of the internationally acclaimed master of calligraphy, Nasrollah Afjei.

By constantly challenging the preconceived boundaries of calligraphy through trial and experimentation, Afjei creates flawlessly fresh work. Practicing for over 27 years, Afjei believes calligraphy offers a universal language which does not necessarily have to be read to be understood, the energy which encompasses his works are universally communicative and emotive.

Appealing to primal emotions his works are applicable to all audiences. Afjei utilises the written word, like an engineer; the angles in his scripts are precisely thought-out to create a complex myriad of various shapes.