Shaikha Manal's daughter Shaikha Fatima and son Shaikh Mohammad Bin Mansour enjoy the art on display at Art Dubai 2010. Image Credit: WAM

Dubai: Art Dubai, regarded as the biggest annual art gathering in the world, came to a close Saturday. The exhibition's halls were full of crowds of different nationalities and ages keen to view the range of art on display this year.

Shaikha Manal Bint Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Wife of Shaikh Mansour Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs; visited Art Dubai on Ladies Day, accompanied by her daughter Shaikha Fatima and son Shaikh Mohammad Bin Mansour and other female artists and dignitaries.

Shaikha Manal said: "The UAE's wise leadership has been aware of the fact that the sustainability of economic development entails equivalent social and cultural development. The event succeeded as a key platform for human and artistic creativity and as a forum bringing together artists, fans and collectors to interact and further enhance the relation between artists and the public."


Local and international Galleries' told Gulf News expressed their satisfaction with the outcome of Art Dubai 2010.

John Martin Director and Co-Founder of Art Dubai said: "... this year witnessed many more people and the sales were great because many galleries have already sold out all the collections they brought."

Australian Gallery, Agathon Galleries, represented by Director Marie Geissler told Gulf News; "It's a very exciting experience and profitable business environment [being] part of a very open community such as Dubai, where the opportunities ... put you in direct contact with the whole world.

"We are showcasing abstract works and this is our first participation and it has [had] fantastic attention." Asked about the sales, she replied, "Yes indeed we sold couple of pieces and we are here for [the] long term and Dubai has a lot to offer."

Brazilian BOLSA DE ARTE gallery agreed with the Australian gallery's comments. Co-owner Egon Kroeff said he looks forward to taking part next year. The positive reviews continued with the Swiss Barbarian Art Gallery, represented by Director Natasha Akhmerova, who said; "We sold a number of pieces and the experience was fruitful."

While Emirati Hunar Art Gallery, represented by the owner Al Anoud Al Warshow said: "As an Emirati I'm so proud of such international recognition and the feedback was artistically and financially successful."

Visitors enjoyed the variety of artworks, and were seen exchanging artistic knowledge and negotiating prices.

Yemeni Nagi Bin Braik, 68, there with his Scottish wife Carol, 64, said: "It is an impressive experience for Dubai to host such marvellous numbers of artworks and enable people to come and see and learn ... But I don't see enough attention paid to Arabic art such as calligraphy or even poetry."

British visitor, John Henderson, was full of praise for the event; "It's an excellent space and we like the traditional and contemporary art, photographs and the illustration. Although we are not in the position to buy but we are enjoying the exhibition very much ... we believe that, each year Art Dubai will get bigger and better."