Shaikha Fatima Bint Hasher Al Maktoum during the launch of the first Cultural Pottery Festival. Image Credit: Atiq Ur Rehman/Gulf News

Dubai: The first Cultural Pottery Festival in Dubai is inviting guests to experience the history of the pottery industry at the Al Fahidi Historical Neighbourhood from November 11-15, and from November 18-19.

The presence of pottery in the UAE dates back to the 1100-600 BC, with the craft becoming popular for people residing in the mountainous areas of the country in the 1970s.

Organised by the Dubai Culture and Arts Authority, the festival themed ‘Pottery: Legacy and History’ sheds light on the UAE’s handicrafts, preserving the country’s national heritage and passing it on to the future generations.

Considered a cultural means of expression, pottery workshops, which explain the stages of pottery development, and painting are available at the festival, along with a library where guests can access books on the history of the craft.

“Pottery involves creative and artistic skills and has persisted throughout time despite changes in people’s habits,” said Saeed Al Nabouda, Acting Director General at Dubai Culture.

The festival will serve as a journey to the past to identify the process of creating and designing pottery as well as its uses.

Some of the pieces discussed at the festival include ribbed ceramic bowls and jars, found in a tomb at Jebel Al Buhais from 1100-600 BC.

“We hope the festival helps revive the spirit of this craft by encouraging artisans to practice it, giving it a distinctive cultural, unique, commercial and touristic character to preserve this profession from extinction,” added Al Nabouda.

Dubai Culture aims to enhance Dubai’s cultural scene and draw attention to the UAE’s rich heritage. It aims to build bridges of constructive dialogue between different civilisations and cultures to enhance Dubai’s position as a creative and sustainable global city for culture, heritage, arts, and literature.