Expect plenty of art, films, workshops, tours and more…

Ras Al Khaimah Fine Arts Festival is back for its ninth edition running from February 6 to April 3, 2021 kicking off the UAE’s 2021 arts calendar.

The annual arts festival was established under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Saud bin Saqr Al Qasimi, UAE Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Ras Al Khaimah, organized by the Al Qasimi Foundation, and presented by Marjan.

Once again, the festival is located at the historic Al Jazirah Al Hamra Heritage Village in Ras Al Khaimah, but there are two new exciting mini-exhibition sites within the emirate: the public viewing deck of the UAE’s highest peak Jebel Jais and the Open Park on Al Marjan Island.

The artworks and programmes are centred around the theme of ‘hope’ and in keeping with the UAE’s 50th anniversary, the festival is looking to the past and exploring the future through the lens of contemporary art at a time when hope is central to our daily lives.

Here’s what you can expect from this colourful festival. 

Art, photography and sculpture

Ras Al Khaimah Fine Arts Festival

Expect more than 130 artworks by a diverse mix of artists from some 49 countries including the local talent, notable GCC artists and other international artists hailing from India, Pakistan, Sudan, Australia, Philippines, South Korea, and China, in addition to names from Europe and the United States.

Film screenings

Works of emerging independent filmmakers from Egypt, Iraq, Iran, Tunisia, Jordan, Algeria, and Hungary will be shown throughout the first month of the festival.

Indoor screenings of the short films will be held at Vox Cinemas in Al Hamra Mall on Thursday, February 11 and 12 and an outdoor screening will take place in the Open Park on Al Marjan Island on February 26.


Ras Al Khaimah Fine Arts Festival

Workshops will be held in person at all three festival sites, as well as online with topics covering tile painting, handmade ceramic, coffee making, performance art and more.

A community art and film day will also be held on Al Marjan Island on February 26 providing a space for the community to discover the work and talent of local artists and creatives.

Another event highlight is the pet-friendly day on February 20 where you and your pet can partake in workshops, events, shop at stalls and more. You can also adopt a pet Ras Al Khaimah Animal Welfare Center.

A talk on the inner workings of regional arts festivals will take place with Art Dubai’s Regional Director, Hala Khayat on February 26 while musician and ethnomusicologist Dr. Ghazi Al Mulaifi from NYU Abu Dhabi and supported in part by the US Embassy Abu Dhabi will give a virtual workshop entitled ‘Learning Rhythms’ of the Arabian Sea on February 14.

Guided Tours

Ras Al Khaimah Fine Arts Festival

A historical tour of Al Jazirah Al Hamra Heritage Village, led by the Department of Antiquities and Museums, will be held on February 13, 19 and 27 and a walking tour of Old Ras Al Khaimah’s food and heritage sites will take place on February 18 and 25.

A virtual tour of the festival will also be available online after the grand opening on February 5 to make the festival accessible to those not able to travel due to the pandemic.

To attend any of the workshops, activities, tours, or film screenings, you will need to make reservations directly on rakfinearts.ae/workshopsandevents

Once at the festival, you will be able to access information on the art by typing in Fynd.art on your mobile phone browser. A QR code on site will help you with further instructions.

Ras Al Khaimah Fine Arts Festival, three locations: Al Jazirah Al Hamra Heritage Village, Jebel Jais and Open Park on Al Marjan Island, from Feb 6 to April 3. @rakfinearts

Images: Ras Al Khaimah Fine Arts Festival