( Alessandra Giorda) During my last trip to Dubai, I had the honor of meeting, at WAD art exhibition, Mr Ahmed Rukni. He is a very kind man with a sensitive soul. His paintings are beautiful and we reflect the man who creates them. During the event, Colors of Love: Tolerance and Diversity Art Exhibition, the interview with Mr Rukni about the Yaer of Tolerance, his wonderful paintings and relationship with music.

How and when startded the passion for painting?

My passion for art started when I was in school in 1960s, I loved to draw fields of flowers, rivers and mountains with color pencils. I only started painting seriously in the 1990s. I drew houses in old neighborhoods in Sharjah, and those paintings became some of my most important paintings to date. They shaped what my art is today.

What does painting mean to you?

I paint because it is my favorite passtime, I don't notice the hours go by when I'm creating a paiting. It is a gateway from stress, and brings peace of mind.

Painting is poweful, it can speak without words, it can change the world. It is the artists' mission to create paintings and say what cannot be said with words.

What do you think about the Year of Tolerance?

I believe that it is time now that we co exist, with all the different races and religions and nationalities. Especially in a country like the United Arab Emirates, it is very important that we learn to tolerate and coexis.

Will you describe this painting? 

I painted this to capture the moment the Pope met with Sheikh Al Azhar. This painting symbolizes one of the pure meanings of tolerance.

Colors of Love: Tolerance and Diversity Art Exhibition. A great event with an important theme. A thought ?

This exhibition celebrated the important theme of tolerance, especially since it brought so many artists together from a diverse group of nationalities. It states that we as artists should take a step towards celebrating tolerance and diversity

What do you remember about this jovial moment? 

It is always a joy when someone is curious about your art and has a lot of questions, it is even a greater joy to explain my work to interested people. In this moment, I was explaining my painting to Yasser Al Gergawi, the director of programming and partnership at the ministry of tolerance. Al Gergawi is always supportive and generous with his time to attend these art exhibitions

This is an other wonderful painting. Is it mosque? Where?

Thank you, this mosque is in fact in Berlin, Germany. I liked the way the photograph was taken at night and how the lighting complimented it

Painting and music two faces of art. What is your relationship with music?

I love listening to music. When I'm painting or driving, I always listen to classical music.

How do you choose the subjects to paint?

I make a lot of research about several topics and then pick the photographs that I am most interested in. Occasionally, I find objects or scenes in everyday life and take a picture of it, that I later turn into a painting

When do you paint ?

I always paint at night. During the day I am busy working. As a business man, I have a lot of things to do. But at night, when my family goes to sleep, I start to paint. Sometimes until dawn. It is the most quiet time of my day, so I put my music on and I'm able to relax and focus on painting only.