Identity and contemporary art

Contemporary art raises questions about cultures and identities and becomes hybridized and involved in the interconnected process of creative thinking. Generally, it can be argued that globalization is the impetus behind minimizing culture’s elements, which could lead to negative impacts of simulation and homogeneity. Deculturalization minimizes the local elements to create content directed towards a diversified audience for marketing reasons (Lee, 2002).

Artists have their responsibilities to protect and enhance their culture and their intangible heritage; once it is lost, it is lost forever. Indigenous people in every country are holding a rich heritage. Each community’s heritage should be practised and transmitted to maintain its ongoing vitality, strength and wellbeing. To undertake this responsibility, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) seeks to sustain both tangible and intangible cultural heritages. Indigenous peoples provide an essential opportunity to shape the international heritage discourse, and this is intended to ensure taking into account their experiences and needs in safeguarding the living heritage (UNESCO, 2003). 

We are living in a constantly active world full of technological breakthroughs and dramatic change. So, I believe that artists are responsible for representing culture not by focusing on how we are different, but by generating new and unique forms and connections in a creative way. I am one of the Saudi artists who want to raise our culture to be seen by the world as a way of exchanging knowledge. Living together on our Earth leads us to be interactive, to communicate and to gather. I believe that making changes at the same time as sustaining our identities is a big challenge.

Broadly speaking, in order to understand how to narrate culture, there are some critical ideas which raise questions such as how to sustain a cultural identity. Preserving cultural elements and legacies and transmitting cultural traditions could offer a closer connection with the recent past which is more sustainable over the long term.