It is difficult to find art that speaks of the culture and society of the United Arab Emirates. This artist has captured the essence of the UAE with her paintings and designs. From the desert to the city; shopping to the rituals of courtship and marriage, Cheryl Malloy presents this ancient and traditional culture in her bright and dynamic designs.
“Emirati Wedding” depicts the dynamics of courtship and traditional Emirati marriage. The bride and groom are the central focus. The groom is in traditional white khandoora and the bride in her abbaya and shayla. The women of the Emirates wear black in daily wear but when it comes to a wedding they don the most gorgeous and glamourous gowns in a profusion of colour. The colour in this painting is reflective of the colours of the desert dunes and the bright dresses the women wear at the weddings.
To the left of the picture the bride’s family are seen discussing the groom and his family. The bride’s sisters and her mother will use all their power to persuade the father if they deem this to be a good marriage.
The groom’s mother oversees the process. Her son is very important to her and she is keen to ensure he will make a good marriage to a woman who will fit in with the family and produce healthy children.
The traditions of the UAE remain virtually unchanged when it comes to marriage. Attending an Emirati wedding ceremony is a real treat. Men dressed in khandooras dance the night away to traditional music, while the women feast for hours and drink tea in their spectacular ballgowns. The variety of cover the women use on their faces can be dropped in the confines of the all female wedding tent and, apart from the lack of males, you would think you were at a gala Hollywood dinner!