International galleries and exclusive exhibitions are a lot closer to home than you think.
Once Art Dubai is over for this year there’s no reason to stop expressing your creative side. The UAE’s art scene is one of the fasted growing industries in the country and there’s plenty of museums and galleries to meander around in your free time. From Sharjah to Abu Dhabi we discover the best art experiences in the UAE.
Louvre Abu Dhabi
Of course, the UAE’s most talked about and largest art gallery is The Louvre Abu Dhabi. With stunning architecture and ever-changing exhibitions, The Louvre is fast becoming the region’s most-visited tourist destination. On the agenda this year are Rembrandt, Vermeer & the Dutch Golden Age exhibition which is ongoing until May 18th and pop-up performances and cinema screening over the weekends. There are also interactive tours and creative workshops for children.
Sharjah Art Museum
The lesser known but perhaps more fascinating of the UAE’s museums is the Sharjah Art Museum. Opening in 1997 during the Sharjah Arts Biennial the museum houses a collection of modern and contemporary art by artists from the UAE and surrounding countries in The Middle East. On the ground floor, you’ll find a permanent collection of artworks, including fascinating pieces owned by HH Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qassimi, The Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah. You’ll also find a monthly rotating cycle of new works of art, modern installations and sculptures from around the region, many of which offer a fun interactive experience.
Dubai Moving Image Museum
For something slightly different pay a trip to the Dubai Moving Images Museum. The first of its kind in the region, this unique set up is inspired by the birth of cinema and documents the history of the film industry from its low-tech inception to today’s modern technology approach. As well as still imagery you can also experience devices that date back to the 1730s that were used to collect moving imagery. The exhibition details the progression of shadow play, pinhole cameras, peep boxes, magic lanterns, stereoscope images, modern animation and more.
N2N Gallery, Abu Dhabi
N2N Gallery was founded to allow the people of the UAE to discover the rich diversity of the European Academic School of Painting and experience art from contemporary European artists. Founded by art enthusiast Natalua Muzaleve the gallery features sculptures, graphic art and paintings that fuse together realism and modernism. The gallery’s collection is being constantly refined but it usually houses around 170 artworks. N2N also hosts regular workshops and masterclasses for art lovers looking to learn creative skills and interact with others from the local art scene.
Etihad Modern Art Gallery, Abu Dhabi
This large gallery showcases contemporary works of art from local and international artists. While promoting modern art Etihad Modern Art Gallery also celebrates the country’s heritage by inviting local artists to host workshops, talks, poetry nights and live music events. The gallery’s current exhibition Reflections by Lucia Oliva runs until April 11th. The Italian artist creates optical illusions by painting, sculpting and adding mirrors to her works. Olivia is a self-taught artist who has developed her own very unique form of art. she recently invented her unique concept which creates a sort of contemporary “trompe l’oeil” effect, with original scenic set-ups that are a combination of sculpture, painting, installation and theatre.
DIFC Gate Village
Dubai’s Gate Village in the International Financial Centre plays host to a number of quirky and modern art galleries. Spend an evening browsing the walls of these small venues that offer a huge spectrum of art from around the world. There’s over 14 galleries to choose from including Opera Gallery which offers unique art pieces for expert collectors or something interesting on the eye for those that just like to browse. While V Gallery represents unique works of art from painting from Europe and Russia. For something a bit different visit Sotheby’s or Christie’s auction houses who host regular specialised auctions of art, jewellery and furniture.