Ahliah School, Downtown Beirut honored one of its graduates, Dr. Wasmaa Chorbachi, who hosted her for a presentation at the school on April 19, 2017 at 6:00 p.m. entitled “They wrote on clay: Beauty in shards”.
Dr. Chorbachi produced a large portfolio of ceramics combining Arabic calligraphy, geometric patterns, and floral motifs, which she exhibited in her presentation. She graduated from Ahliah School in 1961 and after obtaining her PhD from Harvard University, her artwork was exhibited at many venues including: The Arthur Sackler Museum in Cambridge, the National Museum of Women in the Arts in Washington D.C., the Sursock Museum in Beirut, amongst other places. Her Ceramics works have been acquired by museums including: The Royal Scottish Museum in Edingburgh, the British Museum in London, The Boston Museum of Fine Arts, Beit Al Qur’an Bahrain.
During the presentation, Dr. Chorbachi explained her connection with her artwork saying: “In clay and the word, I find the connection to my ancestors and my artistic inspiration. My large ceramic platters are meant for visual display, and to carry a message through their Arabic calligraphy design rather than for a daily utilitarian use. I usually design the central aspect of relief and textured decoration while executing the rest of the piece in a free improvisation style.”
As for the impact of Ahliah School on her life, she says: “I remember the impact of my first interview with Madame Cortas, and that overwhelming heart stirring feeling you get when you feel you’re in the right place, with the right person. It was immediately in this first interview that I realized how much she understood my thoughts, concerns, educational wishes and respected them. You can just imagine the effect that this had on a teenager hearing this from her head mistress. A total and complete empowerment! It was etched in stone on my mind and soul.”