Art lovers: Visitors at Sikka Art Fair Image Credit: Ivan DeSouza/XPRESS

DUBAI Sikka Art Fair is the place to be this year for art lovers who want to go beyond relishing artists’ creations. Live art, wherein the artists create as well as interact with spectators, answering their numerous queries, is drawing crowds.

Artists Cholo Juan and Rollan Rodriguez, from the Brownmonkeys group, said: “It is very fulfilling for us, every evening, we paint in front of many people and also share our stories with them. The visitors want to know about our work, where we come from and also share interesting stories with us, time just flies and we wish this to go on forever,” said the artists, who are professional designers.

On a wall-sized canvas, the group is creating several pieces of artwork. “You would be surprised to see the end result. Collectively these works will display how the historical neighbourhood where Sikka is, looks,” said Cholo.

In another corner, a skateboard exhibition features works using a variety of media of 21 UAE-based artists. The spectators get to see a group of people skating on half pipe while a few artists paint simultaneously for them.

Live art extends beyond designs and paintings to classical opera, poetry evenings, music, acoustics.

“I plan to visit the fest throughout for the live music evenings,” said Rehana, a resident.

Engaging the visitors as much as the artists, Sikka this year gives you a chance to express how you feel about the emirates. ‘Voice for 2020’ in Houses no. 16 has hundreds of slips of paper tied with threads hanging from the roof.

The visitors have written their wishes for Expo 2020 on these slips.

While some have expressed how much they love Dubai, there are others who have wished peave, prosperity for all and many have penned their dreams.

“I wish I can see Expo 2020 and get to design it,” reads one, while another one read “I want to be the best artist.”

You can watch, relish and you can even learn art at Sikka. Animation Chamber has converted House 12 into an interactive laboratory where visitors can experience illusions, shadow theatre and optical models.

“This form of art is relatively new but a lot of people are showing interest,” said artist Lina Younes.

Ten-year-old student Maryam, who was learning to make puppets at the chamber, said: “I have only seen them, now I am very happy that I can make them too.”

Sikka Art Fair will continue till March 25 at the Al Fahidi Historical Neighbourhood and is a part of month-long Dubai Art Season that unites Art Week, Middle East Film and Comic Con and Gulf Film Festival. Art Week celebrates Sikka Art Fair, Design Days Dubai and Art Dubai.