With more than 200 artists and galleries displaying more than 2,000 pieces across a range of disciplines, World Art Dubai 2021 will serve as a true melting pot for seasoned art collectors, enthusiasts and newcomers, and a valuable vehicle to kickstart the local arts and culture scene for 2021.
Running under the theme ‘Discovering new Perspectives’, visitors will be encouraged to see things differently and find inspiration in all aspects of the show. The carefully considered visitor journey will be brought to life through new and returning activations around Furniture; Mixed Media; Fashion; Music; Dance; Sustainability; Digital Art; Photography; Graffiti; Sculptures and more.
“World Art Dubai is a catalyst for homegrown talent to gain exposure alongside internationally renowned artists showcasing their latest work, sharing knowledge and educating the community, with a common goal of nurturing the local art scene and supporting the UAE’s wider cultural vision. After a challenging year, we are reuniting the global art ecosystem under the theme ‘Discovering new Perspectives’, urging visitors to see things differently through various cultural touch points, both traditional and futuristic,” said Trixie LohMirmand, Senior Vice President, Exhibitions & Events Management, DWTC. “The return of popular features and a range of live performances, activations and workshops, anchored by DWTC’s proven health and safety protocols will result in a memorable experience for visitors.”
Top local and international artists
Celebrating all forms of art, the show will be home to an expansive collection of 2,000 curated artworks starting from AED 3,000. The collection will be displayed by over 200 artists and galleries from more than 27 countries, including countries exhibiting for the first time, Israel, Nigeria, Malaysia and Uzbekistan, who will join show stalwarts from the UK, India, Russia and more.
Artists not to miss include Eli Gross, World Art Dubai’s first-ever Israeli artist whose paintings depict children, the seaside and scenes in Tel Aviv; Dasha Lapushka, from Malta, who combines her love of art and shoes across both abstract and realism in acrylic; and Emirati artist Hend Rashid, whose new artwork ‘Power of Women’ is set to be a big highlight at the show.
Representing the Dubai Police, a group of creative minds within the force will be displaying a collection of artworks.
Artistic performances meet technical marvels
In addition to engaging artworks, World Art Dubai visitors can enjoy performances throughout the exhibition including, for the first time, music and dance performances at various intervals in the show. With technology playing an increasingly important role in artistic entertainment, AI NORN, from Russia, will roll out its robot artist for a regional debut.
“We are excited to showcase our Al NORN Robot, a first for us in the UAE. Al NORN offers the chance to transform a photograph into art by using analysis of colours and shapes, mixing colours then replicating them with brush strokes,” said Nikolay Gavrilin and Anna Mischenko, from Al NORN. “The art completed by Al NORN is a unique form of technology the region has never seen before, and we encourage visitors to come and experience it first-hand.
A collaboration with the revolutionary Theatre of Digital Art takes viewers on a breath-taking digital journey that combines high-end technologies with classical art and visual effects. The show will feature two incredible masterpieces, ‘Monet to Kandinsky’ and ‘The Impressionists’.
In partnership with Samsung, Mahmoud Safwat will be offering visitors the chance to have caricatures of themselves speed drawn on his tablet, with the unique piece being sent directly to them.
Inkopia will also be offering quick takeaway pieces of digital art with their VR printing service that prints magnets with a choice of photo.
Live Urban Street Art
Urban Art DXB will once again return to World Art Dubai with an expanded area dedicated to graffiti and street art. Curated by Louis Wright from London-based gallery, Vandalist Art, the zone will feature live sessions from local and international artists including Maddy Butcher, Fink 22 and Pure Evil.
Make sure to check out the street art jam battle which will take place throughout the four-day fair with two teams of two street artists competing to create the winning piece. Visitors can get involved with the competition by voting on Instagram for their favourites. The lucky two artists to get the most votes will receive a free-of-charge space at World Art Dubai 2022.
Visitors can also have artwork customised at Urban Art DXB with a live interactive print machine that prints pieces consisting of text and colours specially selected by the buyer. Artwork can also be customised by established street artists who apply stencil overlays on canvas.
For anyone looking for art that goes beyond the wall, Artify with Craftology by Ella Orencillo will make its return, offering customised apparel including shoes, accessories and clothing with Ella’s signature pop-surrealism and vivid colours.
“Artify with Craftology has been extremely popular with visitors as well as exhibitors who bring me their attire to be designed right in front of their eyes,” said Orencillo. “My designs include wildlife, flowers and baked goods.”
Dubai based designer, Samar Raafat, will be wowing fashion lovers with a catwalk show featuring her handmade wearable art. Covering both female and male apparel, expect intricately painted abayas and tailored suits to be showcased in the catwalk area at various timings across the four-day event.
Workshops for all ages
Returning by popular demand, the workshop corner, led by experts, has a plethora of educational experiences to suit all levels and ages. Key highlights across the four days include Kettle Painting with Dubai-based gallery Funun Arts; Flower Crown making with Russian visual artist Valentina; and a photography workshop led by the team at Nikon.
In addition, the Art Tea Talks are set to offer new perspectives to an array of topics in a casual environment, with both speakers and audience invited to speak about art over tea. The topics include the healing and positivity of art and what artists need to know about working with designers by online art gallery, Artezaar; art conversations with blank canvas; the art of curation and the creative process led by experts, and the transformative journey of awareness and creativity by Lebanese abstract artist, Cynthia Nouhra.
Al Jalila Cultural Centre for Children will also be providing mini budding artists with pottery classes, as well as guided tours through work completed by creative children from the centre. If children prefer capturing art rather than handmaking it, Nikon’s Kids Photo Club is offering a series of free photography classes designed to cultivate an aspiring young photographer’s skill set.
Curated by contemporary artists, Diyali Bhalla and Beena Samuel, ‘Where Art and Sustainability Meet’ will see sustainability put under the spotlight at this year’s World Art Dubai which is solely created using upcycled newspapers and discarded printer papers.
Curators Batool Jafri, Samar Kamel, Petra Kaltenbach and Louis Wright are returning to work closely with exhibitors to provide a visual journey across the four days. All curators will be on site to assist art enthusiasts with any queries, as well as display their own art: Batool’s work critiques gender and ability-related inequalities; Samar’s art examines cultural attitudes towards women; Petra combines technology and natural elements to create fine art; and Louis excels in street art, heading up the curation of Urban Art DXB.
World Art Dubai 2021 will be held under stringent safety and hygiene protocols. DWTC has proven its capability to curate the safest face-to-face environment and deliver world-class events with the highest safety protocols, as evidenced by the recent edition of Gulfood, which welcomed tens of thousands of visitors with 98% of local and international attendees recording a ‘safe’ or ‘very safe’ experience.
To ensure safety of visitors, and in line with all government guidelines, a range of measures will be implemented, including social distancing, mandatory mask wearing, regular disinfection and clearly marked and defined entry and exit areas. World Art Dubai has partnered with www.fynd.art to provide visitors with a contactless experience. By scanning an art piece with a smartphone, visitors can explore information about artwork exhibited, artists and galleries.
INFO: World Art Dubai will be held at the Dubai World Trade Centre, halls 1 and 2 from 7-10 April 2021 between 1-9pm each day, except Saturday which runs until 8pm. Tickets cost AED 20 for adults, AED 10 for children, with family packages also available. Buy online to enjoy 20 per cent off ticket cost. Parking is free at World Art Dubai at Trade Centre Multi-Story Car Park.