Ms. Shafeena Yusuff Ali is a patron of the Kochi-Muziris Biennale and has long associated herself as an ardent supporter of the arts. Her innate intuitiveness in the way she views and perceives art is visible in the projects that she has been part of, noticeably at Port Muziris – A Tribute Portfolio Hotel in Kochi, India and The Great Scotland Yard Hotel in London, UK.
Her approach is layered, with an eagerness to tap deeper into the apparent context and to learn further. The Port Muziris hotel is home to high standards of décor, with artwork that reflects the re-imagination of Kerala, a culturally rich and vibrant state in South India. In essence, the hotel’s art was handpicked by Ms. Shafeena along with the art curator Mr. Vimal Chandran, paying respect to the lost past and re-imagining of the region, culture and the people into complex narrative images with magical, exotic and colourful compositions that reveal themselves in the present.
Furthermore, inspired by the historic significance of the Great Scotland Yard Hotel and the opportunity to do something really different, Ms. Shafeena has commissioned art consultant Sarah Percy-Davis of Hollandridge Group to create and curate a significant new collection of paintings, sculpture and installations recalling the location’s past.
Ms. Shafeena wanted to define the Great Scotland Yard Hotel by its art, using the artworks to reveal the building’s distinctive, rich history, but not in a way that was predictable or themed. The scope and achievement of the artistic vision behind the project, makes her one of Britain’s important artistic patrons, in effect creating an extraordinary new exhibition space in the heart of the West End that champions some of the best contemporary talent on the market.