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Leena Al Ayoobi digitally unearths an ancient holy sculpture and puts it into the metaverse

A Holy Sculpture from the Dilmun ancient era enters the NFT space

Endless opportunities have been created by the world of NFTs, artists are bound to create unique art to connect with audience and make a difference. A Bahrain based artist Leena Al Ayoobi, has already taken it upon herself to create meaningful, impactful, and lasting artwork. She is a self-taught artist and is the founder of Dar Alfann Gallery and the first NFT exhibition in the MENA region.

There was a buzz most recently that Al Ayoobi had reclaimed arguably her most powerful work, a collection of bulls’ heads displayed during NFT MENA Exhibit 2022 in March during the Formula 1 weekend, called The Holy Dilmun based on a holy sculpture that dates back in history to 2,000 BC.

Bahrain was once called Dilmun, an ancient civilisation that flourished around 2000 BC. In 1955 in an archaeological site in Barbar underneath the floor of the second temple, a copper bull’s head was discovered and excavated. It was the last intact part of a wooden box that would have housed a harp used for religious ceremonies. It is still not clear what this sculpture resembles, but went on to become the face of Dilmun’s civilization.

A legacy traditional artist who is trailblazing the NFT world, Al Ayoobi is creating waves in the NFT domain by showcasing her artistic abilities. She created the first official NFT for Binance, the largest cryptocurrency exchange firm globally.

She took it upon herself to unearth this mysterious artifact in an NFT form, which allows it to enter the metaverse world. She told the story from 3 different perspectives by creating 3 versions which she called The Holy Dilmun Collection.

The first one is called “Sea”, representing a source of food and riches for thousands of years. The rich bluish color of the bull’s head speaks of its legacy, good luck and fortune.

The second is called “Culture”, rich with colors which talks of the diverse culture that Dilmun offers. This sculpture portrays how the intricacies of an established civilisation came together to form a sophisticated society.

The third one is named “Mystery”, a hidden meaning inside it which is nothing but mysterious. This sculpture is painted with a special paint that absorbs over ninety-nine percent of light, and represents the uncovered mysteries of the Dilmun civilization.

Each of these sculptures has been recreated in a 3D form and then turned into NFTs which makes them accessible for viewing and purchasing from anywhere in the world.
And this is what Al Ayoobi has set her eyes on emerging as a contemporary artist by repeating episodes of history in the form of her artwork.

Besides creating the first NFT for Binance, Ayoobi has also worked with Starbucks Middle East to create an artwork for a limited edition cup for Bahrain National Day. She is one of a kind being the only signed artist for designing customized GCC themed home accessories with the Home Center group. To enhance her portfolio further, Al Ayoobi has collaborated with brands like Mont Blanc, GE Aviation, CFM, and the Standard Chartered Bank.

As the digital climate continues to evolve it is clear that it will require initiative and hard work from those who wish to stay on top. One thing is for sure, however the art space changes, it is certain that Leena Al Ayoobi will be there, leading the charge.

This collection can be viewed at the Prism NFT marketplace.

Jonathan James
Jonathan James
I serve as a Senior Executive Journalist of The National Era
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