Watch: Inside the Jameel Arts Centre in Dubai

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Get your cultural fix at the newly opened arts centre in Al Jaddaf…

The Jameel Arts Centre is the newly opened art institution by the Dubai Creek in the city’s Jaddaf waterfront neighborhood.

Far away from the hustle and bustle of Dubai, it is the first non-governmental art space of its kind in the Gulf.

The contemporary arts institution spans over an impressive 10,000-square-metres, and was officially inaugurated by H.H. Sheikh Maktoum bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai in November 2018.

So what’s inside?

The simple white boxy façade of the Jameel Art Centre is home to curated commissions, projects, and solo and group exhibitions, drawn both from the Art Jameel Collection and through regional and international collaborations.

While the exhibitions we saw during our visit to the Jameel Art Centre were really impressive, none of them are permanent, which means that there will be fresh new exhibits all year around.

Be sure to check their website for an updated schedule of exhibitions, workshops and tours.

The Jameel Art Centre is more than just an exhibition space, too. It is a cultural destination where workshops, tours, discussions and events are held and open to the public.

Here’s a quick overview of what was there when we visited:

 Art Galleries

Spanning across three floors, the centre offers 10 gallery spaces brimming with art, rich in heritage from the Middle East and South Asia.

You won’t find many paintings on display here as the centre’s focus is on contemporary art. What you will find are works of art using materials and base on concepts that reflect the culture of the Gulf – both past and present.

Be sure to keep your eyes peeled for smaller rooms hidden behind black curtains in some of the gallery spaces where short films are displayed throughout the day.

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Jameel Library

The Jameel Library is an in-house library located on the ground floor of the Jameel Art Centre. It is the UAE’s first contemporary art library and resource centre that is open to the public. Currently, the collection consists of nearly 3,000 bilingual books, journals, catalogues and the collection is expected to expand as time goes by.

The library also hosts several talks, research projects, reading groups by experts in the region, all with a dedicated focus to cultural histories of the Gulf and its neighboring regions.

Jaddaf Waterfront Sculpture Park

Once you’ve worked your way through the art centre, there’s more to see outdoors. Head through the back door of the reception area and take a walk around to enjoy some more exhibitions – plus a pretty cool view of Dubai Creek.

Don’t forget to head up the stairs as well for another outdoor exhibition, where you can catch a glimpse of the sculptures located at the front of the centre.

How to get there:

The easiest way to get to the Jameel Art Centre would be by car and it’s located right opposite the Palazzo Versace, though it would be wise to keep Google Maps turned on for assistance.

The closest metro station are Al Jaddaf on the green line, though it is about a 15-minute walk from the station.

Jameel Arts Centre at Jaddaf Waterfront, opposite Palazzo Versace, Sat to Thur 10am to 8pm, Fri 10am to 10pm. jameelartscentre.org

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Images: Jameel Art Gallery