Al Fahidi Festival celebrates UAE’s art, culture

The historical neighbourhood has planned a host of special shows and events for the fest, which begins on February 6

Image Credit: Supplied
A painting by Mawaheb artist Alex Loveday
Gulf News

The “Al Fahidi Festival”, which will open in The Al Fahidi Historic Neighbourhood on Saturday, February 6, from 10am to 10pm, is a celebration of the art, culture and heritage of the UAE. This old residential quarter of Dubai, located by the creek, has been beautifully restored and now houses small museums, cafés, art galleries, artists and artisans’ studios and heritage shops that have all planned special shows and events for the festival.

Mawaheb from Beautiful People, an art studio for adults with special needs located in villa 11 next to the old city walls in this quaint neighbourhood, is presenting an exhibition of paintings and sculptures inspired by the works of famous Italian artist and sculptor Modigliani. Besides hosting its first exhibition in the studio, Mawaheb will also inaugurate an art corner and coffee shop on the premises, to be staffed by Mawaheb artists.

Saudi Arabian artist Hussein Al Mohasen will be at XVA gallery for the opening of his solo show, “Ayah”, featuring colourful graffiti style works that combine visual art and poetry.

The Majlis Gallery has organised a group show, titled “The New Orientalists”, by 10 international artists. These traveller artists have been regular guests at the gallery, which is the oldest in Dubai, and their work documents the city’s changing landscape and way of life over the last three decades.

Tashkeel, which has five fine art studios and a small gallery in the neighbourhood is hosting the first solo show by Saif Mhaisen. The show, titled “Work”, is part of Tashkeel’s First Solo programme, which offers artists who have not had a solo show in the UAE the opportunity to plan, prepare and install their first show. Mhaisen will also talk about his inspirations and process. Other artists working at Tashkeel House will also open their studios to the public during the festival.

Participants from the neighbourhood also include Alserkal Cultural Foundation, Arabian Tea House, Bastakia Nights Restaurant, Calligraphy Museum, The Coffee Museum, The Coin Museum, Stamp Museum, artist Fatma Lootah, Home of Eastern Arts, Local House, Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Centre for Cultural Understanding, and fashion designer Mona Fares, who will present the latest range of handmade abayas and women’s and children’s collections from her label Neon Edge.

Jyoti Kalsi is an arts-enthusiast based in Dubai.

The art exhibitions will run until February 29.

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