The Dubai Collection will launch its first exhibition on November 6, at the Etihad Museum, featuring the works from the private collection of HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Ruler of Dubai. The exhibition titled When Images Speak: Highlights from the Dubai Collection, will narrate the story of the region’s artistic and cultural scene under three thematic chapters: Abstract Variations, Societies in Transition, and Evoking the Environment.
Curated to discuss the use of abstraction in art, works by contemporary Arab artists Dia Azzawi and Omar El Nagdi will be showcased in Abstract Variations, in honor of their resistance and perspective for the future of art in the region. Delving into the issues of society and history through the canvas of artists Mahieddine, Selim, and Asaad Arabi, Societies in Transition will shed light on the importance of cultural identity amid the fast-paced world of internationalism. The third chapter, Evoking the Environment will reminisce on how artists have dealt with cities to understand nationhood and autonomy, and will tap into the significant transformation of rural areas to urban landscapes.
Her Highness Sheikha Latifa bint Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Chairperson of Dubai Culture and Arts Authority stated, “The opening of When Images Speak is an important milestone in the Dubai Collection’s trajectory, as it presents the actualization of an innovative initiative conceptualized right here in Dubai.” She added: “This could not have happened without the trust of our patrons and their belief in the ambition of this project that seeks to bring art in the Emirate to the public and public spaces in the UAE and abroad; connect patrons with locally-based artists, and collectively build Dubai’s art collection supporting its cultural sector.”
“Having His Highness’s collection featured in Dubai Collection’s first ever physical exhibition reflects his support for the growth of the creative sector in Dubai. The exhibition will present a rich narrative of 20th-century Arab art, which will also highlight the role the Gulf played in documenting this artistic period,” Her Highness added.
Art historian Dr Nada Shabout will curate the exhibition, “with the aim of creating a historical survey of modern and contemporary art from the region.” She continued, “It will feature some of the most influential and progressive artists, all of whom played a pivotal role in shaping modern movements in the region and throw light on the socio-cultural dynamics of their time.”
Launched by Dubai Culture and Arts Authority (DCAA) and the Art Dubai Group, The Dubai Collection is an initiative under the patronage of Sheikh Mohammed and aims to support the DCAA’s 2019 Vision for the future of culture in Dubai. To spread international awareness about the cultural scene in the region, The Dubai Collection encourages acquisitions by showcasing their work as valuable contributors to the cultural legacy of Dubai.