Saudi artist Noura Bin Saidan adorns her city walls for Riyadh Season

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Lifting herself up 30 meters high with a crane, Saudi artist Noura Bin Saidan has wreathed the walls of Riyadh’s City Boulevard with 16 larger-than-life paintings of the Middle East’s most famous singers and writers.

The 30-year-old murals and fine arts graduate spent 21 days completing her collection for Riyadh Season, an arts and culture festival that runs annually for five months across the Saudi Arabian capital, featuring art shows, concerts and sports events.

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The seasonal event began in 2019 and was canceled in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic. It is now back with full force amid healthcare measures.
Among her best murals is an 18-metre long painting of famed Egyptian singer Umm Koulthoum.

“Umm Koulthoum’s mural is one of the murals that I’ve enjoyed painting. It has details in the clothes and features,” said Bin Saidan, standing next to her mural, adding that it took her three days to complete.

Bin Saidan is her own one-woman team, driving and operating a tractor and crane to move along the city’s vast walls and building facades.

The young artist’s job does not end when her paintings are finished, as she continuously maintains her murals to protect them from damage or fading.

Bin Saidan holds a master’s degree in beautifying roads and tunnels, and hopes to spread Saudi art internationally.

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