Dubai: Artist to unveil 50 artworks shaped in the form of UAE Flag

Egyptian painter, Diaa Allam, will showcase his creations on the occasion of Golden Jubilee Flag Day on Wednesday.



By Mazhar Farooqui

Published: Tue 2 Nov 2021, 8:06 PM

A Dubai-based calligrapher is marking the UAE’s 50th year Flag Day, which will be celebrated on Wednesday (November 3), by unveiling 50 calligraphy artworks that collectively form the shape of the UAE flag.

Diaa Allam, the Egyptian artist behind the “UAE 50 Art Project”, said each acrylic on canvas painting measured 100 X 70 centimetres and featured an Arabic word that embodies the spirit of the UAE.

“I chose the 50 words based on my own interpretation of the characteristics of this beautiful and blessed country that has been home to me all my life,” said the 41-year-old artist, who was born and raised in the UAE.

“One of the words, for instance, is ‘aman’ which means peace, then there’s ‘ittehad’ denoting unity and ‘shumukh’ which stands for glory,” he explained.

Besides the physical art pieces, there are 50 digital video files that display an augmented reality-based graphic of the word.

“Anyone who buys the physical artwork will get its digital version as an NFT (non-fungible token),” said Allam.

NFT is a digital asset that represents real-world objects like art, music, in-game items and videos. They are bought and sold online, frequently with cryptocurrency and are usually encoded with the same underlying software as many cryptos.

The NFT craze hit a new peak in March after an artist sold a digital artwork for a whopping $69.3 (Dh254.55) million at a Christie’s auction. Since then, several celebs including Amitabh Bachchan, Salman Khan, Paris Hilton, Snoop Dogg and Lindsay Lohan have jumped on the NFT bandwagon.

Allam, an urban planner and landscape architect by profession, said his creation is a tribute to the UAE ahead of its 50th anniversary.

“I had been planning this project since I created a symbolic calligraphy artwork to mark the UAE’s 40th anniversary 10 years ago,” he said. “It’s been a long journey and I am glad that it has come to fruition,” he said.

The UAE50Art Project will be unveiled on Flag Day on various local television channels and also hosted at a public venue.

Allam said the artworks would go under the hammer by month-end on a regional NFT platform registered at Dubai International Finance Centre (DIFC).

mazhar@khaleejtimes.com


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