As part of its 15th edition, Abu Dhabi Art, the foremost platform in the WANASA region art scene, will welcome galleries from around the world at Manarat Al Saadiyat in Abu Dhabi, under the patronage of the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council.
For the upcoming 2023 edition, new and returning galleries have submitted proposals through Abu Dhabi Art’s website. In the Modern & Contemporary sector, galleries that have operated for at least seven years are eligible; in the Special Project sector, galleries that have operated at least three years may exhibit solo or two-artist exhibits; and in Emerge, galleries can present artworks under USD 3,000.
In addition to these, the Focus sector showcases galleries whose artists have been chosen by guest curators. There were 80 galleries from 28 countries showcasing 900 artworks by 300 artists, making it the fair’s largest and most diverse exhibition to date.
Moreover, Abu Dhabi Art has selected Emirati artist Mohamed Ahmed Ibrahim for the visual artist campaign following his participation at the UAE Pavilion at La Biennale di Venezia in 2022. As in previous years, a selection of works by the artist will be used to create a global campaign for the fair, allowing an international audience to discover his works and providing a visual identity for the event. Through meditative repetition, Ibrahim’s works reveal his own language: inscriptions, lines, and abstract shapes reminiscent of ancient cave drawings.
“As one of the most important platforms for art, Abu Dhabi Art has tremendous value and visibility for local and global artists and art lovers. Having personally participated in its exhibitions since its inception and seen its growth over the years, I have always believed in its prominence and distinction,” said the Emirati artist Mohamed Ahmed Ibrahim. “The same can be said of the organisers, who champion a community of culture and position it prominently as one of the most important international art exhibitions worldwide. Abu Dhabi Art is a pillar of the local and international art community and we are proud, as its host to welcome Abu Dhabi Art visitors to our city of culture”.
A leading UAE artist, his appointment as the visual campaign artist continues his relationship with the fair, from creating a special commission for Gateway in 2017, to curating Beyond: Emerging Artists at Abu Dhabi Art in 2018, as well as having a solo booth in 2020.
In an official statement, Abu Dhabi Art Director Dyala Nusseibeh, said: “We are already building on the diversity and depth of booth presentations at the fair for the upcoming edition, together with our galleries and guest curators. Visitors will discover contemporary artists from around the world, consider the context of the UAE hosting COP28 this year and the relationship of certain artists to the environment, whilst also encountering a platform for further research on Modern WANASA artists.”
Previous artists who participated in the art fair’s annual visual campaign were Farah Al Qasimi (2022); Ayesha Hadhir, Rawdha Khalifa Al Ketbi and Shaikha Fahad Al Ketbi (2021); Ebtisam Abdulaziz (2019); Monira Al Qadiri (2018); and Tarek Al-Ghoussein (2017).