Nour Festival of Arts 2016


Nour Festival 2016 Call for Submissions Now LIVE

Nour Festival welcomes submissions for the 2016 programme, celebrating the best of contemporary arts and culture of the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) every October and November in venues across the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea.


Nour prides itself on the high quality, contemporary nature of the work it features, and is non-political and non-religious in nature but recognises that both can inspire great art. It offers audiences insights into the diverse make-up of the Middle East and North Africa today, challenging stereotypes of this region and its people through cultural expression. Above all, Nour Festival looks to inspire, and be inspired by, these reflections that have established Nour as a crucial meeting point for East and West.


Nour welcomes artists, creatives and cultural practitioners of these regions, their diaspora communities, and those whose work is inspired by this region of the world, to submit proposals that demonstrate the vision and values of the festival.

Your Submission

Please ensure you read in full the Nour 2016 Submission Brief here, before submitting your proposal using the online submission form here.


Submissions should be as detailed as possible, particularly in the funding requirements. As the Festival’s commissioning resource is limited, proposals that already have funding in place or a strategy for fund-raising will be at an advantage.


The Closing Date for submissions is 17:00 GMT on Friday 8 April 2016


Submissions will be considered throughout April, during which time the Festival Team may be in touch with you. Proposals will then be shortlisted, with the programme finalised in June. If you have not heard from us by the end of June, your application has not been successful this year. Given the high volume of submissions, we cannot provide individual feedback on unsuccessful submissions.


If you have any enquiries with your submission, please contact the Nour Festival Organisers | 020 7361 3618

Arts Service Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea


Not Towards Home, But The Horizon

The Mosaic Rooms present the first UK solo exhibition by Syrian artist Marwan, featuring paintings, etchings and works on paper. Marwan is considered a leading artist from his generation, both internationally and in the Arab world. Marwan is now 81 years old and this exhibition is a celebration of his life’s work. Featuring works selected from the artists studio to showcase the breadth of his practice, from the 1960s up to the present day, it offers UK audiences a rare chance to encounter Marwan’s unique and inspiring oeuvre.


The exhibition journeys through stylistic approaches, with the main motif always remaining the human head. The early works tend towards a more formally figurative approach, with aspects that challenge the traditional, including a flatness of plane, a disproportionate rendering of the skull, limbs appearing and disappearing. From here the expression becomes stylistically freer, larger in scale, more focused on solely the face, beginning to abstract it with vivid brushstrokes and colours. This leads to the visual language audiences are perhaps more familiar with: bold strokes of paint and layers of colour forming the faces themselves; emerging from and submerging into the paint. Form is shaped through the tension between one brushstroke and another, suspended between surface and depth.


Marwan’s latest works, on show here for the first time, see a reduced layering of the surface, a pared down sensibility, which leaves the faces and marionettes floating amidst the white of the canvas. Throughout the artist’s body of work the head is used as multifaceted form to encompass and project the depth of human experience.


Also on display for the first time in London will be Marwan’s 99 Heads series, ninety-nine etchings made between 1997 and 1998, which reference Sufism and the 99 names of God. A space is always left to represent one hundred, a place of light, the attainment of God.


Marwan Kassab-Bachi was born Damascus, Syria, in 1934, and is based in Berlin. He studied Arabic Literature at the University of Damascus (1955-57) before moving to Berlin, Germany, to study painting. From 1980, he held a professorship at the Hochschule der Künste, Berlin. Marwan has exhibited mainly in Germany, but also in the Middle-East and U.S.A., and has works in many public collections, including Abdul Hameed Shoman Foundation, Darat al Funun, Amman; National Museum, Damascus; Bibliothèque Nationale de France, Paris; Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh; British Museum, London; Tate Modern, London; Barjeel Art Foundation; Sharjah; Guggenheim, Abu Dhabi; Nationalgalerie, Berlin; Berlinische Galerie, Berlin; and Städel, Frankfurt.



The Mosaic Rooms, 226 Cromwell Road

London SW5 0SW



9 October to 28 November 2015

Tuesday to Saturday 11.00 am to 6.00 pm




020 7370 9990




About the Artist

Marwan Kassab-Bachi (b 1934) was born in Damascus, Syria. He lives and works in Berlin. He has exhibited widely internationally in group and solo shows. His work is represented in major national and international museum collections.




Arabic Language Courses

Arab British Centre are delighted to present the Arabic Language Courses September – November 2015!

14 September – 13 October:

Level 1 MSA | Level 2 MSA | Levantine Spoken Arabic Level 1

19 October – 17 November:

Level 2 MSA | Level 3 MSA | Levantine Spoken Arabic Level 2

5 week courses | 10 hours


The Arab British Centre Presents Arabic Language Courses for September – November 2015!

Our Arabic language classes are taught by Ibrahim Othman who has several years’ experience of teaching Arabic at a variety of levels, both in his native Syria and in the UK.

If you have any questions about which level is most suitable for you, or would like to sign up, feel free to drop us a line at

When calling or emailing us about these courses, please make sure to indicate which dates/times you wish to join (if applicable).

Our courses all cost £140 each. Your place on the course will only be confirmed on receipt of the course fee in full.

Please also note that we have a list of FAQs which can be found here.

Below is the list of courses being offered between September – November 2015.

Scroll down for further details on each course.

14 September – 13 October |5 week courses| 10 hours

Level 1 MSA


Mondays & Tuesdays

14 September – 13 October | 5 weeks | 10 hours

Course Fee: £140


Level 2 MSA

18:00 – 20:00


14 September – 12 October | 5 weeks | 10 hours

Course Fee: £140


Levantine Spoken Arabic Level 1

18:00 – 20:00


15 September – 13 October | 5 weeks | 10 hours

Course Fee: £140


19 October – 17 November | 5 week courses | 10 hours

Level 2 MSA

13:00 – 14:00

Mondays & Tuesdays

19 October – 17 November | 5 weeks | 10 hours

Course Fee: £140


Level 3 MSA

18:00 – 20:00


19 October – 16 November | 5 weeks | 10 hours

Course Fee: £140


Levantine Spoken Arabic Level 2

18:00 – 20:00


20 October – 17 November | 5 weeks | 10 hours

Course Fee: £140


Level 1 MSA

This course is designed to give absolute beginners in Arabic a basic competence in reading, listening, speaking and writing skills in a dynamic and communicative way, to converse in basic everyday situations in Arabic and also to introduce the written form of the language.


  • Your family, work, describing people and objects

  • Places and countries

  • Nationalities

  • Basic grammar, nouns, verbs, word order and numbers, starting to build up confidence in speaking Arabic

  • Background to Arab culture

Course entry and do I need any particular skills (who is it for)?

Suitable for complete beginners, also suitable for students who have attended a previous course in Arabic or have a basic knowledge of the language but who would like to start again from the beginning.

Level 2 MSA

The course is a progression from our Level 1 MSA course, designed for those with some previous experience of Arabic, who can recognise the Arabic alphabet and engage in basic conversation, but who lack a basic understanding of the grammar system. The course will consolidate the basics and cover descriptions, countries and people, nationalities, shopping, and using cultural expressions in a variety of contexts.


  • The past tense and present tenses in Arabic (regular and weak verbs)

  • Possessives, comparison, numbers with counted noun

  • Family, relations and friends

  • Preferences/likes/dislikes and hobbies

  • Expand knowledge of Arabic vocabulary

  • Arabic texts containing high frequency lexis and basic structures

  • Write a short personal text or letter about familiar subjects

Course entry and do I need any particular skills (who is it for)?

This course is suitable to those who have finished our level 1 MSA course, but it’s also suitable for students who have attended a previous course in Arabic and are able to read and write basic Arabic sentences.

How will I be taught?

The course is based on the communicative approach:

  • Active students’ interaction

  • Emphasis on speaking and listening skills

  • Paired and group work

  • Role playing

  • Use of pictures and authentic material

  • Use of audio-visual techniques when appropriate

Level 3 MSA

The course is a progression from our Level 2 MSA course, designed for those who have some knowledge of Arabic and can read and write Arabic. The course will consolidate the basics and reinforce old vocabulary by covering grammar, numbers, colours, descriptions, dialects, countries and people, and the use of cultural expressions in a variety of contexts. It will also cover more advanced grammar topics such as the subjunctive.


  • Day to day routine : Taking a taxi, exploring and using public transport

  • Visiting a city: This topic involves someone’s experience visiting a city and describing the visit.

  • Arab restaurants in London: describing Arabic food and Arabic culture

  • A trip to the Middle East:

  • Taking a taxi

  • Shopping in Cairo

  • Exploring new places

  • Asking for directions


  • Present tense

  • Past tense

  • Subjective phase 1

  • Adjectives

  • Broken plurals

Course entry and do I need any particular skills (who is it for)?

This course is suitable for those students who are able to read, write and make simple sentences in Arabic and understand the past tense at least.

How will I be taught?

The book that will be used for the course is Mastering Arabic 1 along with other resources such as:

  • Role play activities

  • Pair and group work

  • Use of poems, songs and pictures

  • Use of audio-visual techniques when appropriate

Levantine Spoken Arabic 1 (Dialect)

This is a Levantine Spoken Arabic course. The course is tailored to focus on speaking Arabic and it follows a communicative approach to language teaching.

Course entry and do I need any particular skills (who is it for)?

This course is aimed at students who have studied or know a little bit of Levantine Arabic (colloquial Syrian, Lebanese, Jordanian, Palestinian Arabic) and is suitable for those who are absolute beginners too.


  • Presentations, Introducing yourself, country of origin, etc

  • Daily conversations

  • Taking a taxi

  • Checking in a hotel

  • Eating out

  • Shopping

  • Asking for directions

  • Asking for help

Grammar: Subject pronouns, possessive pronouns, nouns (masculine, feminine) adjectives, past and present tense.

How will I be taught?

The course will be taught using English transliteration with an introduction to the Arabic writing system (Arabic alphabet) and you will be able to read short sentences and road signs.

The teacher will provide all the materials for the course. He will use “Ahla wa sahla” a functional course in spoken Arabic.

Levantine Spoken Arabic Level 2 (Dialect)

This course is a continuation of our Levantine Spoken Arabic Level 1 and develops all aspects of Arabic Language including speaking, pronunciation, listening, reading and writing. It’s suitable for those who have completed the Levantine Spoken Arabic Level 1 Course or who have prior/basic knowledge of Arabic. Students are expected to be able to understand and hold basic conversations in spoken Arabic.

This course will cover:

  • Speaking, pronunciation & listening – expressing opinions, covering more vocabulary on specific topics (below) starting from daily basis conversation and gradually become able to hold a more advanced conversation

  • Learning idiomatic phrases

  • More advanced grammar: present simple tense, present continues, the passive, the active participle, the subjunctive, faعlan adjectives form

  • Read and write Arabic script. Be able to read short sentences, road and transport signs


  • Conversation: we’re very hungry p.127

  • Function A: Counting things

  • Function B: Ordering at a restaurant, hotel

  • Function C&E: Expressing feelings and people

  • Functions B to E/Ch:5: Going out and shopping (food and clothes)

Teaching Method:

  • Interactive speaking method (communicative approach)

  • Grammar based

  • Translation and equivalence

  • Lessons will be supported with audio-visual materials when appropriate

What is required from participants?

  • Flashcards (to be used every session)

  • 3 coloured pens

  • 2 notebooks