Whether you want to check out a new exhibition or learn a new skill…

With a brand new month comes brand new events to check out, and culture vultures, we’ve rounded up plenty to keep you busy in December. Here are 5 cool cultural events to check out in the UAE this month.


The Silence Between Us

This is the first solo presentation of Saudi artist Dana Awartani’s work in the Middle East and is well worth a visit. Awartani is interested in traditional techniques and Islamic motifs but she renders them in refreshingly contemporary ways using material such as embroidery, wood-work and glass. There is also a great deal of research behind each piece making them informative as well as beautiful.

Maraya Art Centre,  Al Qasba, Al Taawun Road, Sharjah, Sat to Thur, 10am to 7pm, until February 18. (06) 5566555. Taxi: Al Qasba. maraya.ae

Structures of Meaning | Architectures of Perception

This exhibition was part of Abu Dhabi Art, which took place in November. Curated by Hammad Naser, it looks at architecture in art and the relationship between language and the spaces we inhabit. There are artists who use code-making and record keeping to present visually interesting pieces as well as other explorations into sound.

Gallery Hall 2, Manarat Al Saadiyat, Saadiyat Island, Abu Dhabi. Sun to Sat, 8am to 8pm, until January 26. (02) 6575800. manaratalsaadiyat.ae


Born in Austria in 1922, Elisabeth Wild’s long life comes together in her kaleidoscopic works. Collecting source material from her life in Austria, Argentina, Switzerland and Guatemala, Wild’s compositions are made by collating bright, colourful and glitzy images and rearranging them into entirely new visuals presented as fantasies or windows into her imagination.

Carbon 12, Warehouse 37, Alserkal Avenue, Street 8, Al Quoz 1, Dubai, Sat to Thurs, 11.30am to 7pm, from January 14. Tel: (04) 340 6016. carbon12.art


The Impressionists and the Man who Made Them

This is most comprehensive film ever made about the Impressionist artists: Monet, Renoir, Cezanne, Degas, Pissarro and others. They are some of the world’s most popular artists, but who were they and why are they so popular? This film concentrates on a 19th century Parisian art collector Paul Durand-Ruel who first exhibited the Impressionists in New York in 1886.

Roxy Cinema, City Walk, Al Safa Street, Dubai. Timings vary, January 18. Tel: (800) 7699. cinemauae.com


Arabic Calligraphy

The rounded curves and shapes of Arabic letters are appealing to all, even those who cannot decipher the text. They are based on systematic codes of proportion, yet there is plenty of room for flourish and personal touch. Learn the basics of Arabic calligraphy on this ongoing course.

Al Qattara Arts Centre, Shareat Al Qattara, Al Ain. 5pm to 7pm, January 6, 8, 13, 15. Dhs300. Tel: (03) 7118225. tcaabudhabi.ae

Advanced figure drawing

The art of drawing a figure is one that has eluded some of the best artists for centuries. It is a basic yet technical skill that takes practice. For this workshop, come equipped with your sketchbook and drawing materials and be coached through the process.

The JamJar, Unit 74, Alserkal Avenue, Al Quoz. 3pm to 6pm, January 26. Dhs78.75. Tel: (04) 3417303. thejamjardubai.com


The Monochrome Revisited

The Jean-Paul Najar Foundation is one of Dubai’s only institutions dedicated to the history of art. Its exhibitions are deeply researched and informative. Learn more about the current exhibition, The Monochrome Revisited, through this guided tour that explains this conceptual and accomplished painting technique that has confounded and intrigued audiences through the ages.

Jean-Paul Najar Foundation, 45 Alserkal Avenue, Street 8, Al Quoz, 10.30am (in English), 11.30am (in Arabic), January 26. Tel: (04) 258 7078. jpnajarfoundation.com

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