Abu Dhabi Art announces the opening of gallery applications for its upcoming 14th edition and the selection of Farah Al Qasimi as its 2022 Visual Campaign artist 

Abu Dhabi, 11 April 2022: Held under the patronage of HH Sheikh Khaled bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Member of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council and Chairman of Abu Dhabi Executive Office, Abu Dhabi Art, an influential platform for the burgeoning MENASA art scene, is welcoming exhibitor applications from galleries across the globe for the 14th edition of its annual art fair, taking place this year from the 16th to the 20th of November 2022 at Manarat Al Saadiyat. 

Following a strong return of sales for the fair after the pandemic in 2021, new and returning galleries are invited to submit proposals via the Abu Dhabi Art website for the upcoming edition in 2022. The sectors open for exhibitors to apply for include, Modern & Contemporary, which is open to Modern and Contemporary galleries who have been operating for at least 7 years; Special Projects, where galleries can present solo or two artist presentations, and must have been operating for at least 3 years; and Focus, galleries in this sector are invited to participate with specific artists chosen by a guest curator.

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Exhibitors will present their artworks at Manarat Al Saadiyat in what is increasingly recognised as a boutique curator led fair, connecting with the richly diverse and multi-national audiences including collectors, patrons and art enthusiasts who convene around this flagship art event in the city, whilst also exploring the offsite projects around the Emirate of Abu Dhabi which comprise part of the wider year-round programming of Abu Dhabi Art. The annual art fair held each November is the culmination of Abu Dhabi Art’s year-round visual arts programme which includes artist residencies, artist commissions and exhibitions along with strong education outreach. 

Abu Dhabi Art has also announced the selection of Emirati artist Farah Al Qasimi, who was recently featured in The New York Times, as this year’s visual campaign artist. Each year, Abu Dhabi Art selects and collaborates with UAE-based artists to create a visual campaign for the fair that closely links to the UAE’s cultural and creative ecosystem. The campaign serves the dual purpose of also enabling a wider audience to discover the works of the guest artist. Al Qasimi’s recent works challenge the viewer to consider their own understanding of reality, aspiration, individuality, and the reflected image. 

Dyala Nusseibeh, Director, Abu Dhabi Art, said: “We are delighted to invite galleries to apply for our 14th edition this year. The Department of Culture and Tourism Abu Dhabi has signaled a strong commitment to bolstering the growth of the Cultural and Creative Industries (CCI) in the region and Abu Dhabi Art plays a key role for the visual arts in this endeavor through its engagement with galleries, artists, curators, exhibition organisers and other arts professionals at the fair. A cornerstone of the arts and culture ecosystem in the city, Abu Dhabi Art strives to be a catalyst in its support for artists and for cultural producers of knowledge more widely. In this vein, for our Visual Campaign, we’ve selected leading Emirati artist, Farah Al Qasimi to work with.”

Commenting on her announcement as the visual campaign artist, Farah Al Qasimi said: “Abu Dhabi is my home, and Abu Dhabi Art was one of the first major art events I attended when I moved back home after college, so it is great to be chosen for this year’s visual campaign. A lot of my work is about and for the Emirates, so I’m happy to be able to share these images in this way.”

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“The images for the campaign are all from very different projects. I’d say that they reflect the range of different approaches in my practice, from observing the real world to building still lives and collages in-studio. There is also a relationship to performance and gesture,” she added.  

Abu Dhabi Art’s visual campaign provides artists a platform to reach new audiences by integrating their work into the fair’s communication materials which consist of gallery applications, invitations, outdoor marketing.

Farah’s work is currently on show at Abu Dhabi’s Cultural Foundation in an exhibition titled, Farah Al Qasimi: General Behaviour, presenting photographic and video-based works from 2012-2021. Her work has been featured by Jameel Arts Centre, The Third Line gallery, Art Basel, New York’s Public Art Fund, the Institut du Monde Arabe the Lahore Biennale, the National Pavilion UAE – La Biennale di Venezia, Toronto’s Cooper Gallery, Sfeir-Semler in Hamburg, the Contemporary Arts Space in St Louis, and was chosen by a jury of leading art professionals to be featured in Phaidon’s new art book PRIME: Art’s Next Generation which catalogues over 100 leading young artists who are under 40. 

Previous UAE-based artists who have participated in the art fair’s annual visual campaign include Ayesha Hadhir, Rawdha Khalifa Al Ketbi, Shaikha Fahad Al Ketbi (2021), Ebtisam Abdulaziz (2019), Monira Al Qadiri (2018) and Tarek Al-Ghoussein (2017), to name a few.

For more information on exhibitor applications for Abu Dhabi Art 2022, please visit the website: https://www.abudhabiart.ae/home/Art-fair/exhibitors/application. For enquiries, please contact the Exhibitor Relations Team via email at Exhibitors@abudhabiart.ae or telephone at +971 2 657 5800.

Abu Dhabi Art will announce more details about the gallery sectors, programmes, curators, and artists in the months leading up to the fair. 

For more information on the art fair please visit abudhabiart.ae or follow Abu Dhabi Art on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube to access the latest information.

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