Abu Dhabi, UAE, 25 June 2018: Under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, Abu Dhabi Art today announced details of its 10th edition, which will run from 14th – 17th November 2018 at Manarat Al Saadiyat. The annual fair, which showcases Modern and Contemporary art from leading international galleries alongside curated sections by globally respected practioners, has put together its most extensive programme to date, to commemorate its 10th edition.
His Excellency Saif Saeed Ghobash, Undersecretary, the Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi (DCT Abu Dhabi) said: “Over the past ten years, Abu Dhabi Art has grown into a globally renowned event for the arts that is culturally and artistically diverse. With the aim of supporting local and regional established artists, and nurturing emerging artists, the fair is a cornerstone of DCT Abu Dhabi’s vision to create a vibrant and sustainable cultural ecosystem in the UAE capital. This year, the programme curated and designed by leading figures in the regional arts world will bring together a host of exhibitions, works, and public events for everyone to enjoy.”
Dyala Nusseibeh, Director, Abu Dhabi Art said: “For our 10th edition, Abu Dhabi Art is honoured to collaborate with phenomenal curators including Dr. Omar Kholeif, Hammad Nasar and Tarek Abou El Fetouh, leading academics including Salwa Mikdadi and Nada Shabout and pioneering local and international artists including our curator for Beyond: Emerging Artists, Mohammed Ahmed Ibrahim and our commissioned artists for historic sites in Al Ain; Moataz Nasr, Ammar Al Attar and Imran Qureshi. Each edition brings a different constellation of cultural leaders together and this year promises to be an engaging edition thanks to their depth of knowledge, expertise and generous contributions to the programme.”
Each year, Abu Dhabi Art collaborates with renowned curators to present a unique curatorial programme. This year, in its most extensive programme to date, exhibitions will remain open after the close of the fair in November, including the Gateway exhibition, curated by Hammad Nasar and artist commissions at Manarat Al Saadiyat and at historic sites in Al Ain. An exhibition curated by ATHR, inspired by the book Letters to a Young Muslim by the UAE Ambassador to France H.E. Omar Saif Ghobash, will also remain open after the official closing of the fair. Within Abu Dhabi Art itself, Focus curator Dr. Kholeif will deliver an important platform for ‘icons of art’ to be recognised through participating galleries.
Dr. Kholeif, a writer, curator, editor and broadcaster based in Chicago and London, said: “With Icons, I wanted to consider the key voices that have not only shaped and influenced Contemporary art over the last five decades, but also those individuals who are setting precedents, and paving the way for future generations of artists through their diverse sets of practices.”
Nada Shabout, Assistant Professor of Art History at the University of North Texas, and Salwa Mikdadi, Visiting Associate Professor of Art History at New York University Abu Dhabi, have been invited to curate the Talks Programme for Abu Dhabi Art this year, and have chosen to focus on the circulation of art and the global and local perspectives on ‘new art market economies’ for the forum.
Beyond is an annual exhibition of large-scale sculptures and installations, which are exhibited across the emirate. As part of the extended off-site programme, Beyond: Artist Commissions returns in 2018 with three commissions in Al Ain by established contemporary artists Moataz Nasr, Ammar Al Attar, and Imran Qureshi. The commissions will be unveiled during Abu Dhabi Art and will be exhibited for two months afterwards.
Also returning to Beyond is the Beyond: Emerging Artists section, where three emerging UAE-based artists will be commissioned to undertake a tailor-made artist programme with 2018’s programme curator, Emirati artist Mohammed Ahmed Ibrahim. At the end of the programme the artists will unveil the finished artwork at Abu Dhabi Art and the works will then remain on display for an additional two months afterwards.
Gateway, the visual art exhibition, invites a unique curatorial perspective from a guest curator each year, with the 2018 edition curated by Hammad Nasar. Entitled Structures of Meaning | Architectures of Perception, the exhibition considers artworks that explore the built environment and language as structures through which meaning accumulates. Structures of Meaning | Architectures of Perception will remain on display for an additional two months after the November dates.
Abu Dhabi Art 2018 will also offer visitors and collectors the opportunity to engage with contemporary performance art through the sixth edition of Durub Al Tawaya, Abu Dhabi Art’s performing arts programme curated by Tarek Abou El Fetouh. The programme will see sitespecific performances throughout Abu Dhabi Art and in different locations across the city from November 2018 to January 2019.
About Abu Dhabi Art – Abu Dhabi Art expands beyond the notion of a traditional art fair, in placing strong emphasis on a diverse public engagement programme, including art installations and exhibitions, talks and events that take place in different locations throughout the year. The culmination of this yearlong programme is the Abu Dhabi Art event in November, which provides an important sales platform for participating galleries whilst also offering these galleries an opportunity to showcase ambitious installations and site specific works by their artists to an audience of over 20,000 visitors.
About The Department of Culture and Tourism - Abu Dhabi The Department of Culture and Tourism conserves and promotes the heritage and culture of Abu Dhabi emirate and leverages them in the development of a world-class, sustainable destination of distinction that enriches the lives of visitors and residents alike. The Department manages the emirate’s tourism sector and markets the destination internationally through a wide range of activities aimed at attracting visitors and investment. Its policies, plans and programmes relate to the preservation of heritage and culture, including protecting archaeological and historical sites and to developing museums, including the Louvre Abu Dhabi, the Zayed National Museum and the Guggenheim Abu Dhabi. The Department of Culture and Tourism supports intellectual and artistic activities and cultural events to nurture a rich cultural environment and honour the emirate’s heritage. A key role played by the Department is to create synergy in the destination’s development through close co-ordination with its wideranging stakeholder base.