ARTSAWA | ALQUOZ
22 October 2008 - 10 November 2008
Artists: MOHAMMED ABLA| AHMED AL BAHRANI| MAHMOUD OBAIDI| HANI ALQAM| AHMED ASKALANY| ZENA ASSI| WAEL DARWESH| IBRAHIM EL DESSOUKI| MANSOUR EL HABRE| MAHMOUD HANAFY| RACHID KHIMOUNE| ESSAM MAROUF| MOHAMMAD EL RAWAS| ALI RAZA| CAMILLE ZAKHARIA
Under the Patronage of His Excellency Dr. Omar Bin Sulaiman, Governor, Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) and Managing Director of the Dubai Culture and Arts Authority, Dr. Lamees Hamdan Al Shamsi, Board Member of the Dubai Culture and Arts Authority on the 22nd of October 2008 opened artsawa, a contemporary art gallery located in Dubai.Nestled within the industrial area in the Al Quoz district within a transformed warehouse, artsawa, is dedicated to promoting world-class regional contemporary art to a global audience. With an inspiring, interactive space for artists, and art-lovers, the gallery is all set to become the hub of contemporary art in Dubai. Commenting on the opening, H.E. Dr Omar Bin Sulaiman said, “We welcome the launch of this new gallery, which contributes to Dubai’s efforts to create a world-class infrastructure for art and culture. The Dubai Culture and Arts Authority wholeheartedly supports Initiatives such as artsawa, which help to create a rich environment for art to flourish. By providing a platform for artists to showcase their art and connect with the community, artsawa adds great value to Dubai’s cultural and artistic scene”. Dr. Lamees Hamdan Al Shamsi said: “The opening of artsawa will help to enhance appreciation and awareness of contemporary Arab art both in Dubai and the larger region. The gallery will serve to encourage both established and promising artists, and raise exposure for their works among art connoisseurs, collectors and investors in the region. Initiatives like this will enable art and artists to play larger roles in shaping and guiding the society.” artsawa was conceived by its owner, Amel Makkawi. Having recognised the potential in the market for serious art, Makkawi set out to create a platform for artistic talent from across the region. Amel has built a reputation for selecting and promoting Arab artists who have extraordinary and individual stories to tell through their art. The opening event featured the works of renowned Arab artists such as Mohamed Abla, Ahmed Askalany, Ibrahim el Dessouki, Mahmoud al Obaidi, Camille Zakharia. Speaking about the gallery, Amel commented, “artsawa is the embodiment of my dreams and aspirations for the promotion of art in the region. The English translation of “sawa” in spoken Arabic is “together” and on that theme, artsawa will facilitate the interaction between art and the public across a wide range of media. Our mission is dedicated to promoting world class contemporary art from the region among a global audience.”Set in a warehouse that has been transformed into a distinctive state-of-the-art 12,000 sq ft art platform with over 3,000 ft of linear wall-space, artsawa promises to be the perfect backdrop to showcase the works of the region’s contemporary artists. The beautiful gallery area combines with a library and video lounge to provide an inviting, personal space for artists and art enthusiasts to interact. Amel continued, “Art comes from the soul and is key to documenting the story of the individual artist’s real life experiences, it is a reflection of our society. artsawa will provide the perfect platform for these stories to be told and for everyone to enjoy.” artsawa will realise its mission by hosting of a series of innovative exhibitions. With up to 15 exhibitions annually, it will not only be one of the largest but also most active art platforms in the UAE and the region, In addition, artsawa will have educational programs and publications that address current issues and practices in the Art world.