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Art Dubai, held under the patronage of HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, is the leading global platform for art and artists from the Middle East and Global South, returns to Madinat Jumeirah Dubai from 3rd to 5th March 2023 (previews 1st and 2nd March).

Over 130 Contemporary and Modern galleries from more than 40 countries across four main gallery sections: Contemporary, Modern, Bawwaba and Art Dubai Digital will be complemented by an ambitious partner and non-profit programme, including newly commissioned artworks and premieres by internationally renowned artists. With an expanded education and thought leadership programme, Art Dubai’s 16th edition will be the fair’s largest and most extensive to date.

Art Dubai 2023 Opening Press Conference.
(L to R): Hala Khayat, Regional Director, Art Dubai; Shumon Basar, Global Art Forum Commissioner, Art Dubai; Benedetta Ghione, Executive Director, Art Dubai and Pablo del Val, Artistic Director, Art Dubai

Art Dubai’s Executive Director Benedetta Ghione commented:

“Art Dubai has always tried to reframe what an art fair can be, and this year’s expanded programme fully reflects our role as a meeting point for the region’s creative industries, across the commercial and not-for-profit sectors. As an independent organisation, we pride ourselves on being more than an art fair – we are an incubator of talent, a catalyst for the creative economy here in Dubai, a convener of great minds, and an entry point to this vibrant ecosystem for the wider cultural sector.”

Art Dubai’s Artistic Director Pablo del Val commented:

“For nearly two decades, Art Dubai has been a place to discover and celebrate new trends, creating and facilitating conversations, and celebrating the strength of creative output across the Global South. Art Dubai is a truly global art fair, and this is reflected in both the quality and geographic spread of the galleries participating this year. That so much of the programme is once again drawn from the Global South highlights the increased interest in and appetite for collecting non-Western art, the strengthening of the gallery scene beyond the traditional centres of the art world, and the role Art Dubai plays as a platform for regions that are under-represented in international collections.”

On renewing their partnership with Art Dubai, Mohammad Saeed Al Shehhi, CEO of A.R.M. Holding said:

“We are delighted to renew and expand our partnership with Art Dubai for a further five years. Art Dubai is one of the most important institutions in the region’s cultural landscape, incubating and supporting innovation and creativity in all its forms and at all ages. Through this partnership we aim to reinforce Dubai’s position as a global centre of culture and to continue empowering the next generation through innovative programmes like the A.R.M. Children’s Programme, which will expand this year to more than 9,000 students.”

Art Dubai is held under the patronage of HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai. Art Dubai is held in partnership with A.R.M. Holding. The fair is sponsored by Swiss Wealth Management Group Julius Baer. Culturally rich developer HUNA is a partner of Art Dubai. The Dubai Culture & Arts Authority (Dubai Culture) is the fair’s strategic partner. Madinat Jumeirah is the home of Art Dubai. Art Dubai is part of Dubai Art Season that runs from 1st February to 20th March.

Gallery Programme

The 2023 fair will include over 30 first-time participants and more than 60% of the gallery programme is drawn from the Global South, reaffirming Art Dubai’s position as the leading marketplace for art from this rapidly developing region.

Art Dubai Contemporary presents the very best in cutting-edge contemporary art from 76 galleries and 34 countries, with particular focus on art and artists from the Global South. For our 16th edition, we are pleased to welcome 14 first-time exhibitors, and 12 galleries who are returning to Art Dubai after a hiatus. The 2023 edition of Art Dubai will feature 24 Dubai-based galleries, more than ever before, reflecting the continued growth of Dubai’s artistic ecosystem and the emirate’s increasing importance as a global creative and cultural hub.

Miryam Haddad (Syria, 1991) – L’ode sans fin – 2022 – Oil on canvas – 190 x 390 x 3 cm – Courtesy Art Concept

Art Dubai 2023 also sees the return of Art Dubai Digital, which launched to critical and commercial success at the 2022 fair. This physical section of Art Dubai provides an annual 360-degree snapshot of the digital art landscape, building bridges between the art and technology worlds, and exploring how artists are utilising new, immersive technologies to collapse the boundaries of the traditional art world. The selection is drawn from across 6 continents, reinforcing Art Dubai’s commitment to presenting global perspectives and diversity, inviting audiences to look beyond traditional art centres, and mapping out the key agents and platforms leading the way. Curated by Singapore-based educator and arts writer Clara Che Wei Peh, the expanded 2023 edition will focus on the artists, galleries and institutions who are driving this fast-developing arena.

Bangkok-based Vipash Purichanont curates the 2023 edition of Art Dubai’s Bawwaba section. Meaning ‘gateway’ in Arabic, Bawwaba exclusively features artworks made in the past year or specifically for Art Dubai, and comprises solo presentations by 11 artists hailing from across the Global South. Across a variety of mediums, from painting and tapestry to filmmaking and performance, this section explores how contemporary artists from the Global South bring forth concerns within their worlds, from socio-cultural issues such as the tension between rapid urban development and traditional values, the legacy of colonisation on environment, human relationships in the age of hyperconnectivity, or personal concerns around the meaning of language and void.

The 2023 edition of Art Dubai Modern is curated by Paris-based critic and curator Mouna Mekouar and Italian art historian Lorenzo Giusti (director, GAMeC, Bergamo) and features solo presentations by the region’s modern masters, reinforcing Art Dubai’s commitment to curatorial scholarship and art historical research. The selection focuses on the pioneers of contemporary art in the MENASA area, whose works are retrospectively playing a key role in today’s art and, by extension, in art history and reflecting the cultural richness and diversity of the region.

Samir Salameh (Palestine, 1944 – 2018) Ma’lula- Syria, 1968, Oil on canvas 114×163

Partner Programme Highlights

A.R.M. Holding has renewed its support of Art Dubai for a further five years, demonstrating the organisation’s commitment to enabling talent and enriching the communities within which they operate. The third edition of the A.R.M. Holding Children’s Programme has been developed by Swedish artist Jacob Dahlgren. Entitled The Flag Project and suitable for children of all ages, this programme of immersive workshops will commence at Art Dubai before expanding to over 90 schools and 8,000 children over two months in what is the UAE’s largest cultural education programme. Using everyday craft materials and scrap fabrics, participating children will be invited to think creatively about their environments, collaging together designs that will later be transformed into flags in an extension of the artist’s ongoing project Signs of Abstraction.

Art Dubai 2023

The leading Swiss wealth management group Julius Baer has renewed its long-standing partnership with Art Dubai for a further five years, until 2027, and are premiering a major new commission by internationally acclaimed new media artist, director and pioneer in the aesthetics of data and machine intelligence, Refik Anadol. Glacier Dreams is inspired by the beauty and fragility of the world’s glaciers and will be unveiled as a series of multisensory artworks over multiple chapters. The work will debut in the Julius Baer lounge at Art Dubai and is the first activation of Julius Baer’s new NEXT initiative, which is designed to foster collaboration between forward-thinking artists and institutions committed to new forms of cultural production.

Art Dubai 2023

Abu Dhabi’s independent platform for emerging artists 421 who, in the second year of collaboration with Art Dubai, will present a group exhibition curated by UAE-based artist and researcher Dania Al Tamimi. Featuring artworks that pose the question: ‘does time move through you, or do you move through time?’, the exhibition will explore time as “the binding element of the biography of objects, the active archive of lives, and the solidifying catalyst of experiences”.

Art Dubai 2023

About Art Dubai

Founded in 2007, Art Dubai is the premier platform to see and buy modern and contemporary art from the Global South. Across its Contemporary, Modern and Digital gallery sections, annual artist commissions and year-round collector and education programmes, Art Dubai champions art and artists from across the Global South, providing a relevant and increasingly important alternative to mainstream, largely Western-led narratives.

Art Dubai is held in partnership with A.R.M. Holding. The fair is sponsored by Swiss Wealth Management Group Julius Baer. Culturally rich developer HUNA is a partner of Art Dubai. The Dubai Culture & Arts Authority (Dubai Culture) is the fair’s strategic partner. Madinat Jumeirah is the home of Art Dubai.

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