Read, sing, watch: A roundup of what’s happening in Dubai

Whether it’s between pages of a book, over soothing music, or on the walls — we bring to you, a round-up of what’s happening in the city


Purva Grover

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Allo Beirut City Walk Cafe
Allo Beirut City Walk Cafe

Published: Thu 21 Jul 2022, 6:01 PM

We all like to enjoy art forms in varied ways and across unique platforms. Whether it’s between pages of a book, over soothing music, or on the walls — we bring to you, a round-up of what’s happening in the city. Pick up a book that is part of the land’s vision to document Emirati achievement in art, enjoy a meal over nostalgic tunes from the golden days of Beirut, or admire the works of 42 artists and designers in a homegrown space.

Read: an ode to document Emirati achievement in art

Abu Dhabi Music & Arts Foundation (ADMAF) recently launched two unique publications, Portrait of a Nation II and Art of the Emirates II, in Dubai to celebrate the work of the national and resident artists and art proponents who have contributed to the UAE’s rise in the art scene. H.E. Huda Ibrahim Al Khamis, Founder, ADMAF and the Artistic Director of Abu Dhabi Festival, said, “Publications remain at the heart of our values and rewarding the creative excellence of the artists and protagonists who have contributed to our nation’s exceptional progress has been at the forefront of the Foundation’s mission since its inception nearly three decades ago. Art of the Emirates II and the companion book to our landmark exhibition, Portrait of a Nation II are a tribute to the nation’s impressive rise in the art scene and those who have inspired it.” Portrait of a Nation II documents the more than 100 prominent artworks, including 17 commissions, in the fields of painting, photography, 3D installations, and audio-visual creations by the over 60 artists who have shaped the artistic and cultural landscape of the nation. Prefaced by a group of renowned art and culture figures, the book carefully showcases the art masterpieces in vibrant images, each followed with a description note by curators, writers, and the artists themselves. The Art of the Emirates II maps the UAE’s exceptional booming art scene, and its leading global position as an artistic and cultural hub. The story is told through interviews, roundtable discussions and essays by the people who have built the UAE’s visual art scene and infrastructure from the ground up since the nation’s founding. From the director of the Louvre Abu Dhabi to the UAE’s most well-known living artists, Art of the Emirates II is an unprecedented conversation with the people who are writing the history of art in the Emirates as we speak.

Sing: a celebration of Levantine talent

If it’s humming to the classical tunes of the Middle East that’s on your mind, then you could head to Allo Beirut, City Walk Café. Going beyond feeding the region with Lebanese street food, they have introduced a series of live entertainment to showcase Levantine talent and stir up the nostalgia of the golden days of Beirut. Every Tuesday and Saturday, absorb the hypnotic oriental tunes of a live music band, to spark the memory of Lebanon’s golden era. Drawing inspiration from the harmonies of Fairuz and the symphonies of Sabah, the local talent is extending a musical welcome to every nationality to share a piece of memory of what the city of Beirut used to be. Plus, Thursdays are dedicated to Lebanese Nights with DJ ToughGuy, where he will mix Lebanese classics with his own. And all this over Lebanese food and a game of tawla, if you must.

Watch: an exhibition of the UAE’s creative landscape

The 12th edition of the annual Made in Tashkeel exhibition is a snapshot of the diverse art and design outcomes in the UAE’s growing creative community, featuring works by 42 artists and more than 90 pieces created using Tashkeel’s facilities by its members, artist-in-residents, workshop instructors and participants, recent exhibitors and clients. “Made in Tashkeel is one of the key ways we highlight the phenomenal range of art and design being conceived and created annually in the Emirates,” said Lisa Ball-Lechgar, Deputy Director, Tashkeel. The exhibition (on until August 31) celebrates its most varied line-up of artists and designers ever through a collective of established working artists alongside with emerging names in the UAE’s creative landscape. Their various cultural and industrial backgrounds are reflected in artwork made across a range of mediums from jewellery and textiles to architecturally inspired designs and photography. Calligrapher Ibraheem Khamayseh’s work arose from the 3D studio. Jehan Ali, Sharifa Al Shashmi and Karam Hoar printed their works on Tashkeel’s Epson Surecolor P9000, while Rima Moukahal, CharLes, KSA-born artist Hadil Moufti, jewellery designer Lia Staehlin and Chie Nakano from Japan created their submissions in workspaces both at Tashkeel Nad Al Sheba and Al Fahidi. The youngest artist featured in the exhibition, 14-year-old Morvarid Mohammad, created work in both oil and watercolour. Visitors can also view pieces from the Tanween Design Programme, Tashkeel’s nine-month programme for designers to create pieces inspired by the UAE.

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