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Published: March 26th 2009
Art Dubai, their 3rd international art fair, was held at the beautiful area of Madinat Jumeirah, Dubai, on March 18-21. With approximately 70 galleries from across Europe participating, it was a pleasant feast for the art starved like myself here in the UAE.
The standard of work was mostly high & interesting, stimulating our sensory side....
Included in the fair, however exhibited seperately outside, (perhaps not a great choice as the works got a bit lost in the sensual & grand architecture & surrounds of The Madinat Jumeirah,) ...was the Abraaj Capitala art prize.
This is the art worlds most expensive art prize at Dh 735,000 (approx $300,000. AUD!) There were 3 recipients chosen who collaborated with curators to create their piece especially for the site. The artists were Nazgol Ansarinia's Persian rug, emroided with scenes of everyday life in Iran; Kutlag Ataman's video installation of a barefoot man wandering the desert & Zoulikha Bouabdellah's installation of night stars suspended over a floor of mirror.....
Not a lot to say about these artworks, I have trouble reconciling that amount of money paid for an artprize. Perhaps the artwork lost some of its impact exhibited
outside & not contained & focused in on, within gallery walls, but for me, I could not find a lot to relate to nor be moved by.
As for the rest of the fair, it had some very interesting pieces, of which I will attach a few photos & let the art speak for itself.
Beyond the artfair was of course the stunning surrounds of Madinat Jumeirah, a complex of resorts/ hotels/ souks/ restaurants/ cafes etc, almost the size of a small suburb, all layed out in an Arabic meets Venice style of architecture, design & layout, complete with canals & gondolas...(more photos to come)
It is a great place to wander about, strolling the exotic souk, luxurious restaurants, relaxing cafes, rich & sensual lanterns & arabic patterned awnings decorate the walkways & buildings. You can relax on a beanbag in the ampitheatre, smoke the Sheesha, wine & dine. It is particularyly beautiful in the evenings when the sensual feel of the place is accentuated by the use of subtle"mood" lighting..... A highlight to Art Dubai!
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