Abu Dhabi's finest art exhibitions on right now
There’s no denying the capital’s culture credentials…
We’re fortunate to live in a city where such a strong emphasis is placed on the celebration of art. Our round-up here includes work from grandmasters, world-renowned talent, rising local stars and a giddying glimpse into the creative fringe.
There are a number of virtual exhibitions taking place like, ‘not in, of, along, or relating to a line’ via the NYUAD Gallery, but we’re focusing on those real-world, boots-on-gallery experiences.
This innovative pop-up gallery concept sees artists given a temporary location to exhibit their work at one of a network of Aldar Properties. Currently, in Yas Mall, Abdelrahim Salim is showing ‘Formations’ — a collection of abstract works around the artist’s muse, Maheerah. In Al Jimi Mall, Al Ain, you can catch the work of Simrin Mehra Agarwal. Her work explores concepts such as nature, growth, and regeneration, through drawing carvings and relief compositions. The Afra Al Suwaidi exhibit ‘Slumber’ is now on show at World Trade Center Mall, an assemblage of works that use evocative materials to tell stories of childhood trauma. Despite already featuring some big talent, this is just the beginning for Art Space, future phases are already in the planning pipeline.
This current phase of Art Space will continue until May 2021. For more information, and for upcoming exhibitions, visit tcaabudhabi.ae
Qasr Al Muwaiji
The permanent exhibition at Al Ain Palace, Qasr Al Muwaiji is housed in a gorgeous glass building in the main site’s courtyard. Here you’ll be told the origin story of the palace and its most famous former resident, HH Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan. The visionary Sheikh was born and raised in Qasr Al Muwaiji, which makes this very special location the perfect place for illuminating the life of the great man.
Al Ain, Khalifa bin Zayed Street, closed Mon, Fri 3pm to 7pm, all other days 9am to 7pm. Tel: (03) 767 4444, @qasralmuwaiji
Louvre Abu Dhabi
This is not a specifically curated exhibition per se, more a fresh collection-bolstering for the winter season. A number of significant international loans (including the spellbinding Haystacks, End of Summer, by Claude Monet) are now on display at the stunning museum from the Musée d’Orsay and the Bibliothèque Nationale de France. Expect to see the works of Vincent Van Gogh, Claude Monet, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, and more. For a sneak peek of what’s new, check out our full article on the recent additions.
Louvre Abu Dhabi, Saadiyat Island, Abu Dhabi, Tue to Sun 10am to 6.30pm, closed Mon. Tel: (02) 6736 688. louvreabudhabi.ae
Manarat al Saadiyat
Manarat Al Saadiyat is hosting a notoriously BIG exhibition, ‘Contact High: A Visual History of Hip-Hop’ with invaluable assistance from cultural and lifestyle Kingpins, Sole. On display, you’ll find treasures from four decades of booth-fire, digging through crates and the sound of 808s — including photographs, albums, magazine covers and memorabilia, helping to chart Hip-Hop history.
Manarat Al Saadiyat, Saadiyat Cultural District, Saadiyat Island, Abu Dhabi, daily 10am to 8pm, until May 31. Dhs30 per person. Tel: (0)2 657 5800. manaratalsaadiyat.ae
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This homegrown arts centre seeks to unearth and nurture local and regional talent. Warehouse421 provides a space that educates and inspires artists and art-enthusiasts, with engaging workshops and of course, essential exhibitions. Right now you can catch ‘Hyphenated Spaces: “The Cup and The Saucer” Reinterpreted’ — a multi-artist visual dissection of the nature of individualism, unity, and separation. From January 30, you’ll be able to see ‘Mina Zayed: Reflections on Past Futures’ and ‘Float: Stephanie Comilang’. The former deals with the aesthetics of a neighbourhood that, despite ongoing modernisation projects, retains enduring, nostalgic aesthetics. The latter is dedicated to two films by Stephanie Comilang, both of which follow the complex lives of Filipino expat workers.
Warehouse421, Abu Dhabi, Mina Zayed, free to visit (although you’ll need to book), Tue to Sun 10am to 8pm (closed Monday). Tel: (02) 6768 803, @warehouse421