Installation view of Diana Al-Hadid’s <em>What remains of the floating man hypothesis</em>, 2023, on display in NGV Triennial from 3 December 2023 – 7 April 2024 at NGV International, Melbourne.  Photo: Lillie Thompson<br/>
Lillie Thompson 2023

Diana Al-Hadid

Photo: Diego Flores

Diana Al-Hadid
Syria born 1981, lived in the United States 1986–

Level 1
NGV International
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Diana Al-Hadid’s work explores the space between the mystical and scientific through sculpture, wall reliefs and works on paper. Her work draws on historical frameworks that continue to influence culture today, taking inspiration from religious imagery, ancient manuscripts, female archetypes and folklore storytelling. Using various materials, Hadid creates large-scale sculptures that layer figurative, landscape and architectural elements. Her work is framed by a range of references from antiquity, cosmology, cartography and architecture, giving form to ghostly images.

Al-Hadid responds to the NGV’s ancient and medieval collections through her preferred materials of polymer gypsum, fibreglass, paint and gold leaf. Her work creates new narratives among both secular and religious works selected from the NGV Collection across three permanent collection galleries. Through their journey, audiences’ perceptions are reoriented spatially and narratively, as the installation emphasises what is known and unknown, hidden and revealed between art, collections and their audiences.

Diana Al-Hadid examines the historical frameworks and perspectives that continue to shape discourse on culture and materials today. With a practice spanning sculpture, wall reliefs, and works on paper, Al-Hadid weaves together enigmatic narratives that draw inspiration from both ancient and modern civilisations. Al-Hadid received an MFA in Sculpture from Virginia Commonwealth University in 2005 and a BFA in Sculpture and a BA in Art History from Kent State University in 2003, and attended the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in 2007. Her work is held in collections including the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts; the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; and the Toledo Museum of Art.

Commissioned by the National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne
Courtesy of the artist and Kasmin Gallery. Proposed acquisition
Supported by Anne Robertson and Mark Robertson OAM, 2023
This artist has been supported by the Elizabeth Summons Grant in Memory of Nicholas Draffin