The weekend at art dubai

The weekend at art dubai

March 18, 2017
The weekend at art dubai
The weekend at art dubai

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Visit Art Dubai this weekend to explore over 90 galleries from 43 different  countries, see Rana Begum's monumental work for the 2017 Abraaj Group Art Prize, experience live performances in the gallery halls, join the eleventh edition of the Global Art Forum and bring your family to take part in workshops and tours for families and children at the Sheikha Manal Little Artists Program.

Art Dubai also has the most extensive not for profit programming of its kind which includes Art Dubai’s Projects, focusing for the first time solely on performance art; Global Art Forum 11, the most significant annual arts conference in the Middle East and Asia which this year focuses on the trade of goods and ideas that shape–and reshape–the world; The Room a large scale immersive and performative daily gala dinner and the unveiling of the Abraaj Group Art Prize, the most significant art prize in the region which this year was awarded to Rana Begum whose commission will be presented alongside works by three shortlisted artists in an exhibition curated by Omar Berrada.


Art Dubai Commissions, as part of the extensive not-for-profit programme, gives regional and international artists the opportunity to develop dynamic site-specific works for the grounds of the fair. The projects are developed with local and international partner organisations creating a collaborative model that is designed to extend the life and influence of the project beyond the fair in March.

Yasmina Reggad returns to curate a series of performances as part of Art Dubai Commissions 2017.

Artists include Manuel Pelmuş, Lana Fahmi, Eglé Budvytytė, Iván Argote and Pauline Bastard.




The Room is an immersive, large-scale interactive installation that takes place at the Fair each year. In 2017, Beirut-based art collective Atfal Ahdath (Vartan Avakian, Hatem Imam and Raed Yassin) will create The Room: Cooking Liberty, a surrealist visual and gastronomic experience. Taking cues from Salvador Dali’s cookbook, Les Diners de Gala and through exaggeration and repetition, Atfal Ahdath invites guests to experience its live visceral installation, open to the public during the fair in March.

The Collective will also present guests with a seated gala dinner for two nights only, in an immersive setting reminiscent of a grandiose banquet; a truly surprising experience that flirts with familiarity and expectation. Spread over two richly decorated rooms within Mina A’Salam hotel, Cooking Liberty will deliver a unique drinks reception followed by a seated twelve-courses dinner with perfectly paired drinks, whilst the delights of this live visceral installation unravel before your eyes.



Atfal Ahdath is an art collective founded by Vartan Avakian, Hatem Imam and Raed Yassin in Beirut in 2010. They copy, steal and recycle material to assemble a set of deconstructed and rewired objects, images and situations. In their work Atfal Ahdath exploit dynamics of reproducibility and standardisation to create works that are as familiar as imaginary worlds and as uncanny as everyday reality. Their work has been shown in Arts Santa Monica (Barcelona), Mori Art Museum (Tokyo), Sharjah Biennial 10, Wallach Art Gallery, Columbia University’s Wallach Art Gallery (New York), Sultan Gallery (Kuwait) as well as venues in Qatar, Egypt and Lebanon.


Trade is at the heart of humankind. Trade connects people to one another in a myriad of ways, seen and unseen. Trade can fuel civilizations and empires. It can dictate time itself. The end of trade turns somewhere suddenly into nowhere.

– Shumon Basar

The eleventh edition of the Global Art Forum focuses on the trade of goods and ideas that shape and reshape the world. Titled Trading Places, the Forum is conceived by Shumon Basar as Commissioner, with Antonia Carver and Oscar Guardiola-Rivera as Co-directors. The Forum kicked off in January 2017 and culminates at Art Dubai, March 15-17 2017.

Global Art Forum 11: Trading Places explores the relationship between the economy of goods and ideas that constantly shape who and where we are. From ancient ports to the “New Silk Road” to algorithmic financial markets, the infrastructure of trade is also a geography of imagination and invention. It is also the foundation upon which Dubai and sibling Gulf cities have forged their pasts and their futures, from pearls to airports.
The Forum convenes the most compelling minds from the fields of art, history, economics, philosophy, urbanism, literature and more to tell untold histories and stories of the making and remaking of the world through trade.

Art Dubai partnered with the Dubai Culture and Arts Authority, and Dubai Design District (d3) to present the Global Art Forum.

'Compiled by Mariam Nihal'

March 18, 2017
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