Dubai: An outdoor exhibition of the relatively unknown wildlife that survives in the Arabian Peninsula despite harsh desert conditions, habitat encroachment, poaching or hunting, will take over the Abu Dhabi Corniche in December before touring the Gulf region.
Displayed in the shape of a falcon's eye, the large-scale WILD ARABIA with National Geographic Al Arabiya exhibition will display 100 photographs of some of the most amazing species from the Arab region, chosen by National Geographic in Washington.
"The inspiration for creating an outdoor gallery comes from our architect and exhibition designer Franck Minthe who has designed many large-scale outdoor galleries in some of Europe's most beautiful squares over the past ten years," said Caterina Lo Mascolo, Managing Director of WILD ARABIA with National Geographic Al Arabiya.
Previous outdoor galleries showcased the work of famous environmental and wildlife photographers such as Yann Arthus Bertrand and Steve Bloom.
The Al Ain Wildlife Park and Resort and the Emirates Marine Environmental Group will oversee which species to showcase here.
Flora and fauna
"Every species will be scaled according to the [International Union of Conservation of Nature] IUCN Red List though we want to showcase not just the endangered animals but also the flora and fauna that are thriving in this region," said Lo Mascolo.
"Certainly 90 per cent of the images will surprise viewers because besides the dugong, oryx, scorpion, falcon, camel, sandfish, and Arabian horse — how many Arabian species are you familiar with?" said Lo Mascolo, who participated at the TEDx Al Ain event earlier this year with a talk called Creating a Culture of Conservation.
"Conservation begins with opening your eyes to what is around you and being proud of what you see," she added.
After a month in the capital the exhibition will move to Dubai on the Emaar Boulevard and then at Ibn Battuta Mall. Sharjah may also host the exhibition before it continues through the Gulf region during the winter months and Europe and North America next summer.
WHAT: WILD ARABIA Exhibition
WHEN: December, 2011
WHERE: Abu Dhabi Corniche