Curator-led Tour with the Artist


Saturday, 25th June 2022  |. 15:00 - 16:00


An opportunity to hear from the artist Heba Al-Akkad and curator Raghad Mardini in person about this Velevet Society exhibition that is based around their two lives in 90s Syria. It will be accompanied by a British Sign Language interpreter. 



Heba Al-Akkad was born in Damascus in 1981. She graduated from the Faculty of Fine Arts at Damascus University 2006. She now lives and works in Gothenburg, Sweden, where she has been able to escape the cycle of familial violence and abuse that she suffered since girlhood. She has had solo shows across Europe and the Middle East. Litehouse Gallery has commissioned work from Al-Akkad on themes of self-identity and dress.


Raghad Mardini, on the other hand, found herself inducted into the “velvet society”, a figurative term for a class involved in high business and power in Syria during the 90s. Photographs from Mardini’s archive will give visual evidence of the velvet society, which, after many years of negotiating its excesses and its alienating demands, she finally decided to reject. These photographs will be shown alongside a fashion collection supplied by western designers including Dior, Versace, Mugler, Chanel, Galliano, YSL, Alaia as well as Syrian designer Nicola Khoury, all of which Mardini wore during her time within the velvet society.