Dubai International Financial Centre © DIFC. Courtesy DIFC.
© DIFC. Courtesy DIFC.
Under the patronage of Her Royal Highness Princess Haya Bint Al Hussein, wife of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of UAE and Ruler of Dubai, the much-awaited DIFC Gulf Art Fair opens with more than AED 360 million ($100 million) worth of original artworks from around the world offered for sale.
Last night, the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) hosted a welcome reception for regional galleries and artists to showcase the art installations currently on view at The Gate, including works by Dubai-based artist Patricia Millns, Conrad Shawcross, Parviz Tanavoli, Khaled Ben Slimane, Patrizio Travagli, Sophie Ernst, Lara Baladi, Nadim Karam and Simon Hitchens.
“The DIFC Gulf Art Fair is intended to establish Dubai as a centre for art commerce, we look to contribute to the cultural life of the emirate, the UAE, the Gulf region and the wider Middle East. As a centre for the global art trade, Dubai will also attract young artists from across the region, and encourage the development of those who already call this land their home. Artists from this region will no longer feel the need to seek a future for their talents outside its borders, and will instead be able to contribute to the flourishing of the cultural life of their homeland from their native soil.” said His Excellency Dr. Omar Bin Sulaiman, Governor, DIFC.
“Today, the DIFC is home to a broad range of regional and global financial institutions. Tomorrow, the centre will be a hub for regional and international contemporary art – and art commerce. We are also moving forward with the expansion of the DIFC District, which itself was created with many artistic features in its architectural design. It has also been specifically designed to publicly display works of art” he added.
The DIFC Gulf Art Fair officially opens today with an exclusive Patrons’ Preview, and includes a three-day Global Art Forum and education programme to foster debate and increase awareness about trends in collecting art. A number of the world’s leading artists, curators, art professionals, and collectors are confirmed to take part.
Public access to the DIFC Gulf Art Fair is on Friday and Saturday, 9-10 March, with proceeds from ticket sales going to the Al Madad Foundation for START, a project to fund children’s art workshops in deprived communities.
“With prices for art ranging from the hundreds of dollars to millions of dollars, the inaugural DIFC Gulf Art Fair will offer to collectors an extensive range of work from forty of the world’s top art galleries. Our comprehensive programme offers an unmatched opportunity for regional and international art collectors to interact with gallery owners, artists, and curators to learn more about global trends while enjoying the art on sale,” said Mr. John Martin, Director of DIFC Gulf Art Fair.