Abu Dhabi Art 2010

The second edition of Abu Dhabi Art is happening this week from 4th-7th November at the Emirates Palace Hotel. It's an art fair which brings together an exclusive selection of high-level art galleries and innovative emerging galleries from around the world.

For this year’s edition, over 40 local and international galleries will be present, so I am looking forward to seeing some great artwork (shame I don’t have the cash to buy any). The four day event will also include talks, workshops and educational activities which all look very promising. The full programme guide can be downloaded here.

Some of the highlights include:

  • Guggenheim Abu Dhabi - Representing History Now, a discussion with artists Lara Baladi, Iftikhar Dadi, Mary Kelly and Akram Zaatari, moderated by Suzanne Cotter
  • Louvre Abu Dhabi, analysis and perspectives are explored by the AFM curators and prominent Emirati personalities that share the joint ambition for this project
  • Vincent van Gogh: Facing Tragedy, discussion about Van Gogh’s artistic exploration and the fusion of art and life
  • Public Art, from the object to the environment - Paris Sorbonne Abu Dhabi and Mark Potier discuss the public art
  • Voices of Emirati Art, a panel discussion that will bring together key protagonists from the Emirati visual arts scene.

But there are two programmes that I'm looking forward to the most, the Design Studio and Art, Talks and Sensations

Design Studio, a space where visitors will be able to participate in the creation process, while engaging with international designers.

There will be representations from eminent studios and designers such as the Khatt Foundation, Studio Formafantasma, Campana Brothers ... and my brother Khalid Mezaina, who will be launching his new Krossbreed line of t-shirts, tote bags and notebooks. Needless to say, I am very proud and excited for him. If you will be around, please drop by to say hello and check out his products.

Krossbreed products by Khalid MezainaThere will be an unveiling of the Campana Brothers’ installation that was created in collaboration with two young Emirati designers, Khalid Shafar and Noura Al Mehairi.

There will also be a design workshop, led by Huda Smitshuijzen Abi Fares from Khatt Foundation & Joumana Al Jabri from Febrik, which will consider the role of typography in the urban landscape and engage its participants in the creation of site-specific typographic work that fuses city narratives to a broader dialogue concerning participatory art in a public space.

Art, Talks and Sensations, curated by Fabrice Bousteau promises to be an inspiring journey through a labyrinth of art on the beach of the Emirates Palace hotel. Visitors will be able to “lose themselves – both imaginatively and literally – in a sensory-awakening artistic promenade”. There will be a daily programme, some of the highlights include:

  • an open-air movie theatre screening short films by artists Camille Henrot and Yang Fudong
  • a new series of photographs by Erwin Wurm
  • ‘The Desert of Deserts’ a sound installation by the American collective Soundwalk

I missed last year’s Abu Dhabi Art, but after looking at the detailed programme and the last year’s  highlights on video (below), I’m looking forward to going back to the capital for this.