Furthering its pioneering work in assisting the career development of the nation’s emerging artists and designers, with the support of L’ÉCOLE, School of Jewelry Arts, the Abu Dhabi Music & Arts Foundation (ADMAF) has announced the winners of the ADMAF Design Fund 2022. The award bestowed two young Emirati jewelry designers, Asma Almarri and Media Alfalasi, a 50,000 AED grant to help establish their creative careers. In addition, they received a 5-day trip to Paris to attend courses led by, among other teachers, master craftsmen in High Jewellery creation, at L’ÉCOLE, School of Jewelry Arts, a unique place dedicated to sharing the jewelry culture with the widest audience. Launched in 2019, the award provides training and mentorship to help young people interested in jewelry design gain the skills they need to succeed in the industry.
Asma and Media have developed a diverse range of styles and rich craftsmanship techniques in the making of their designs. The week at L’ÉCOLE, School of Jewelry Arts granted them a comprehensive understanding of gemology, jewelry know-how and history of jewelry which can further enhance their approach to art and design.

Urban Fabric is a series of four sculptures resembling pieces of thread, conceptualized and built by NYUAD sophomore undergraduate students Roudhah Al Mazrouei, an Emirati national, Gerald Jason Cruz from the Philippines, and Jennifer Tsai from Taiwan. These forms are intertwined and interlaced into the ground, turning the physical environment around the art piece into a canvas that the thread is woven into, linking each piece together.
In attendance at the unveiling were the UAE Minister of Culture and Youth HE Noura Al Kaabi, France’s Minister of Culture Rima Abdul Malak, Chairman of Department of Culture and Tourism (DCT) Abu Dhabi HE Mohamed Al Mubarak, His Britannic Majesty’s Ambassador to the UAE Patrick Moody, Spanish Ambassador to the UAE Iñigo de Palacio, Founder of ADMAF HE Huda I. Alkhamis-Kanoo, NYUAD Vice Chancellor Mariët Westermann, Director of the Award Emily Doherty, Christo’s Director of Operations and nephew Vladimir Yavachef, Executive Director of Culture at DCT Abu Dhabi Rita Aoun-Abdo, Abu Dhabi Art Director Dyala Nusseibeh, Executive Director of The NYUAD Art Gallery and the University’s Chief Curator Maya Allison, and along with the winning artists, among others.

Following the success of the first edition of ‘Forever Is Now’, the international art exhibition held at the Pyramids of Giza which welcomed over 500,000 visitors, Art D’Egypte’s second edition returns to the historic site with the support of Abu Dhabi Festival.
Forever Is Now II showcases contemporary art installations by a dozen international artists from eleven countries including Emirati conceptual artist Zeinab Al Hashemi, Saudi artist Mohammed Al Faraj, international award-winning French-Tunisian eL Seed, accomplished Egyptian sculptor Ahmed Karaly, JR the internationally acclaimed French street artist best known for his epic art installations, Spanish artist SpY famous for transforming public spaces into full-blown experiences, classically trained British-American sculptor Natalie Clark, Therese Antoine Louis, Italian artist Emilio Ferro, Cameroonian Pascale Marthine Tayou, and Syrian-born and Swedish-raised visual artist Jwan Yosef.

Under the Patronage of Her Highness Sheikha Shamsa bint Hamdan Al Nahyan

Portrait of a Nation II: Beyond Narratives, the jewel of Abu Dhabi Festival 2022, has come to a close but the story of the nation’s artistic development as it transpired over 50 years lives on through the innovative launch of the virtual exhibition and its book companion, Portrait of a Nation II: Beyond Narratives.

Now visitors around the world can embark on an immersive journey through the exhibition, which ran for three months from 21 January to 16 April at Manarat Al Saadiyat, exploring over 100 key artworks by 62 of the nation’s pioneering and emerging artists while interactively navigating the five themes of the exhibition: Reclaiming/Reimagining Home, Shifting Landscapes, Configurations of Togetherness, Reclaiming/Reimagining Language and Shifting Sociality.

The exhibition’s book companion, Portrait of a Nation II, documents the creative spirit and collaboration of the featured artists and their works in vibrant photography and in-depth interviews and essays from curators, writers, and the talented artists themselves, guiding readers through the remarkable transformation of the UAE’s art history.

Now you can tour the Portrait of a Nation II: Beyond Narratives exhibition anytime, anywhere. In a first-of-its-kind event, the digital launch of the landmark exhibition allows you to visit—and revisit— more than 100 artworks by 62 pioneering and emerging artists that shaped the nation’s visual arts landscape. Through in-depth descriptions and interactive audio guides, the immersive experience takes you on a journey through the collaboration and inspiration that narrate the story of the UAE’s impressive rise in the art scene.

Portrait of a Nation II: Beyond Narratives curated by Maya El Khalil and co-curated by Roxane Zand was inaugurated by HE Sheikh Shakhbout bin Nahyan Al Nahyan, UAE Minister of State, on 21 January. More than 100 key artworks, 15 of which were commissioned by Abu Dhabi Festival, arranged in five central themes reflect the innovative spirit of the artists who paved the way for the UAE’s artistic evolution over the past five decades. Throughout its three-month run, the exhibition also hosted panel discussions, workshops, and a variety of community and educational events, giving visitors insight into the inspiration behind the artworks that led to the nation’s remarkable development.

ADMAF’s booth at the pavilion hosted panel discussions that feature the winners of their grants and fellowships and offered guided tours for university and school students visiting the fair on November 16 and 17. The event also highlights ADMAF’s annual awards, initiatives and programmes and visitors were able to purchase copies of the Foundation’s latest historic publications documenting the visual art scene in the UAE: Portrait of a Nation II and Art of the Emirates II.
ADMAF’s booth also hosted a Q&A session with Emily Doherty, director of the Christo and Jeanne-Claude Award, to introduce the award, which has been held annually since 2012 in partnership with NYU Abu Dhabi.

As part of its mission to support the talents and ambitions of promising Emirati artists, the Abu Dhabi Music & Arts Foundation (ADMAF) is supporting the upcoming solo art exhibition by Maitha Abdalla, the first Emirati artist to participate in the An Effort Art Residency programme in London. The exhibition, titled ‘INT. The Body – Sunrise’, took place between 11-16 October 2022 at Cromwell Place, London.
The exhibition marks the culmination of Abdalla’s three-month An Effort residency in London’s Soho district, supported by ADMAF. An Effort supports artists who, either through their messaging or their process, seek to connect and engage with their audience and wider community in a unique way.

A 4-day inspiring event, Creative Nation 961 began with a concert by the Lebanese Symphony Orchestra at the Emirates Palace Auditorium, conducted by Maestro Harout Fazilian, with the participation of 80 musicians and a special appearance by Lebanese singer-songwriter Mayssa Karaa.
The remaining programme took place at the Bab Al Qasr Hotel, Al Dana Ballroom in Abu Dhabi, which includes exhibtions by well-established Lebanese artists and innovators like the ‘Meshwar Exhibition’ by the Fouad & May Tomb Foundation for the Arts and ‘Pierre Sadek…Picturing History’, an exhibition featuring the works of the pioneering Lebanese caricaturist by the Pierre Sadek Foundation.

Abu Dhabi Festival’s annual Ramadan Spiritual Music Series features performances and events in the spirit of the holy month, inviting artists from around the world to celebrate the spiritual values that transcend difference. A place for both established and emerging artists, the Series showcases the work of masters and discovers new talents to nurture their development.

The Spiritual Music Series is a platform encouraging artists from different musical backgrounds to explore spiritual chanting in their own style chanters, pop singers, opera singers, and more have all shared the beauty and wisdom of spiritual music in the Series. Now in its fourth consecutive year, it will feature the stirring sounds of celebrated chanter Sheikh Mahmoud Al Tohamy in two world premiere virtual performances, In the Hands of God and Heritage and Harmony reflecting on the cherished values of the holy month.

Portrait of a Nation II, the book companion to Abu Dhabi Festival 2022’s flagship Portrait of a Nation II: Beyond Narratives exhibition, guides readers through the remarkable transformation of the UAE’s art history, tracing the path chartered by 62 pioneering artists who have shaped the UAE’s visual arts scene as it unfolded over the past 50 years. Edited by co-curator Roxane Zand, the book captures each of the more than 100 artworks, 17 of which are commissions, in vivid photography, with messages from curator Maya El Khalil, prominent writers and the very artists who helped lead the nation on its transformative journey through the arts.

Art of the Emirates II, edited by Melissa Gronlund, is an unprecedented conversation with the artists and the leading protagonists who have written and continue to write the history of art in the Emirates. Through in-depth interviews, roundtable discussions and essays, the sequel to the first edition portrays the driving forces behind the nation’s visual arts scene – those who have witnessed history and carry the country’s inspiring message, vision and compelling story of creativity and innovation through their achievements.