The initiative is for both emerging and established artists who wish to showcase their talent to the public, but not pay the costs or commission associated with hanging their work on gallery walls.
“It gives local artists the chance to showcase their artwork and open up a platform for them to be recognised and appreciated,” said Fuad Al Najjar, senior asset director for shopping malls at Majid Al Futtaim Properties. It’s that need for appreciation that led contemporary artist Arshad Hussain to exhibit his work in the Deira City Centre’s Bridge Gallery in collaboration with Gloria Art Gallery.
His abstract paintings were up on display for a week in March, giving shoppers and other passers-by a glimpse of his talent.
“Every artist wants their work to be appreciated,” Hussain said. “Money is not that important for me, if people like your art and give you a good response, this is great,” he said. Originally from Pakistan, Hussain has been living in Dubai for a decade now. With its burgeoning art scene, he said the city needs more venues for artists to exhibit their work. “It can be a challenge because there are many artists in Dubai, it’s a very big market and gets competitive.”
But free venues such as the one at Deira City Centre are great for emerging artists trying to break into the art scene, Hussain said.
“I’ll tell new artists to showcase all your work everywhere you can, art is for the people so get it out there.” The artwork in Deira City Centre is primarily located inside the Bridge Gallery, a brightly lit, open-space area with pre-installed display boards to hold up photographs and paintings.
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