All works at Art in Secret cost Dhs500. Some of them are by established artists, others are by art students who are adults with special needs. The catch is, you won’t know which is which before you buy…

From today until Thursday January 21 you’ll find an art exhibition with a twist at Al Serkal Avenue: it will feature 100 original A5-sized artworks – painted, drawn and illustrated – and all of them will be displayed anonymously.

All of the works are signed only on the back, meaning you will have to choose the piece you love without knowing who the artist is.

The Art In Secret exhibition will feature the works of internationally-acclaimed professional artists as well as new creators and art students from Mawaheb from Beautiful People, an open studio for adults with special needs.

This encourages people to choose the artwork that speaks to them, rather than the one from the most prominent artist. Every artwork, no matter the artist, is on sale for a flat rate of Dhs500.

Pic07One of the artworks that will be on show. 

The prominent artists who are on display include Fereydoun Ave, Farah Ossouli, Koorosh Shishegaran, Ali Akbar Sadeghi, Babak Yaghooti, Fatma Lootah, Amartey Golding and Elham Moaidnia. So yes, if you know any of these artists’ aesthetics very well, you might be able to guess which work is theirs (but we imagine they’ve thrown some curveballs in for good measure).

All funds raised will go to Mawaheb From Beautiful People, which is in the beautiful and historical neighbourhood of Al Fahidi. Mawaheb works to encourage its students to be more independent, and to foster some fantastic artistic talent (as you’ll see if you go down to the exhibition).

Here’s the talented Victor from Mawaheb to tell you about the show:

Some of the exhibiting artists tell us why the show is important to them:

Saudi artist Hadil Moufti: “I’m so proud to have contributed with my artwork to this great initiative with the Evolve team. It promotes acceptance, inclusion and opportunity for the wonderful artists of Mawaheb from Beautiful People.”

British artist Patricia Millns: “I’m honuored to have been asked to show my work with fellow artists from Mawaheb. Their dedication to the act of creating beauty and happiness for the viewer fills me with hope for the future of our shared craft.”

Mawaheb from Beautiful People artists: “The Art in Secret exhibition gives us the opportunity to show that we are equal with mainstream artists.”

London-based Nariman Fadakar: “Art should be free and if it’s not it should have purpose. I liked the idea of being a part of this show, it’s purpose clearly gave me sense of purpose.”

Showcase Gallery, Al Serkal Avenue, Al Quoz. 6pm to 10pm tonight, and 10am to 7pm, January 19 to 21. More info at

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