Audi recently launched the #untaggable campaign, which encouraged artists from an array of disciplines to break away from the norm, express themselves and spread the mantra that no one can be labelled by any one word.
One of the most influential artists involved with the project, which culminated with a display piece of art - a life size Audi Q2 down at Urban Beats at The Beach opposite JBR, is visual artist Dina Saadi.
Saadi is a Moscow-born, Damascus-raised visual artist, muralist and vlogger based in Dubai; who travels the world to paint murals and shoot videos, having visited cities and towns across the Middle East, Europe, Asia and the US. The premise of #untaggable really appealed to her artistic side.
“Audi contacted me and told me about the campaign – which means you can’t define yourself using only one word,” she says. “You’re a mixture of things, you like doing different things, you can’t sit in one box. It’s about being bold, being different and not really trying to fit and just being yourself. I really like that concept, it’s really interesting and you can do so many things around it.”
Saadi’s piece, simply titled Dina, was a combination of a variety of themes, motifs and influences – including Andy Warhol’s pop art movement.
“I looked at images relating to my personality, my art, and which represent my character,” she said. “So I chose five images, the first of which was an image for Andy Warhol, I’ve totally admired his work and his work has influenced my style – the pop art style and the colours he used, lots of basic colours and patterns.
“The second one was of a seahorse which floats along in the background, with the waves. This reflects my love for nature, for adventure and for the sea. It’s an interesting one because it’s very reflective of fatherhood for me – a fun fact about seahorses is that it’s the male who carries the baby, not the female. Also, seahorses move in couples, and when they do they link their tails together – it’s very sweet.”
“One of the other images I used is a flying heart, which represents freedom, light, being fulfilled, following your dreams and stepping out of your comfort zone. It used to be my signature visual really – I painted it all over the world – I have these images in Cairo, one in San Francisco. It kind of reminds me of street art, and that’s why I love it.”
“It was challenging for me because it was the first time I’ve ever painted on a car, and every time you paint on a different surface and a different material it’s a different experience. That was a very nice challenge to pick on. ”
Saadi was just one of five artists involved in the big spray, and the work revolved around a number of creative influencers in the region, who each got their own life size Audi Q2 model painted by other artists. Among the influencers who Audi partnered with for the project was Abri, one of the region’s most pioneering soul musicians, as well as eclectic free-running group UAE Parkour Team; and Big Hass, the radio host and face of Arab hip-hop culture. One of the most diversely creative influencers involved with the project was Ashley Klinger, who is a mixed bag of talent. Not only is Klinger an Instagram personality and fashionista, she’s also a musician and trained 777 commercial pilot, and one of very few female pilots across the industry.