With over 130 participants hailing from more than 40 countries and six continents planned to show at Art Dubai 2023, it’s set to be yet another standout year for the region’s art connoisseurs. Ahead of the 16th edition of the fair, executive director of Art Dubai, Benedetta Ghione, takes MOJEH through five of her regional artists to watch
Moza Almatrooshi (b. 1990, Dubai) is a multimedia conceptual artist based in Sharjah, UAE. Almatrooshi looks at traditional cooking and the baking of pastries in her artwork. Her work centres around storytelling and the power in social dynamics. Her focus on storytelling emerges in a magic realist form, reshaping historical narratives, playing with genres of stories such as fables or the coherence of stories through misaligned or partial translations.
The artist’s concern with power in social relations manifests in examinations of hospitality, gender, nation and military forces. Almatrooshi combines a variety of media to best articulate her message, working across audio, video, performance, food, land art, ceramics and screenprinting. Almatrooshi will be part of Hunna Art gallery in the Bawwaba section
Sarah Abu Abdallah
Sarah, (b.1990 in Qatif, Saudi Arabia, where she lives and works) specialises in painting, video, installation and photography. Her work challenges the impossible by piecing together improbable elements and connections as a gesture of hope and outlet for new narratives through video, installation, poetry, images and conversations. Initially training as a painter, Sarah Abu Abdallah was later attracted to the documentary capacities of the camera, as well as the possibilities inherent in video and performance, leading her to create multimedia works. Through references to gender roles and the female experience, Abu Abdullah explores issues of obscurity and value, probing the social and cultural conditions of contemporary Saudi Arabia. Abu Abdallah will be part of ATHR gallery in the Contemporary section
Shamma Al Amri
Shamma Al Amri (b. 1985, UAE), holds two MA degrees in Culture and Creative Industries and Contemporary Art Practice from the Royal College of Art in London. Shamma is a very active member of the UAE cultural scene and has founded a number of cultural projects such as The Nomad Box, Majhool and bleep. She is also a co-founder and a member of The Arab Art Saloon in London.
Shamma’s practice constitutes researching concepts of autonomy and agency within collective bodies and systems by examining ‘language’ through subversion, binary readings and contesting theories of hybridity and rights of opacity. The artist often works with historical events or anecdotes in parallel with current accounts and found contemporary content to create studies that explore systems of equivalencies to expose discrepancies in narrative and context. Al Amri continues to explore through various mediums how one navigates cultural and ideological norms through image, text and translation as language becomes a performative act in her work. Al Amri will be part of Tashkeel gallery in the Contemporary section
Zeinab Alhashemi is an Emirati conceptual artist based in Dubai (b: 1985, UAE). Having graduated from Zayed University with a BA in Arts and Science, the artist specialised in Multimedia Design, and has since become known for her large-scale contemporary site-specific installations. Alhashemi is fascinated with capturing the transformation of the UAE following the country’s construction and industrial booms from her own perspective.
She examines the contrast as well as interdependence that came to exist between the abstract, geometric shapes of urbanism and the organic form associated with her country’s natural landscape. Since Alhashemi’s childhood, the familiarity of traditional scenery and nature was largely disturbed to facilitate the rise of the man-made. In her experimental installations, in search of a new identity appropriate to the modern condition, the artist deconstructs the viewer’s understanding of their surroundings and introduces an alternative point of view, creating a new perception of the reality. Alhashemi will be part of Leila Heller gallery in the Contemporary section
Miryam Haddad (b. 1991, Damascus, Syria) creates artwork that discloses, for anyone willing to look closely, a thrilling adventure: that of a very young artist who harbours two equally intense worlds: the abstract world of writing that conveys a message, and the incarnated world of painting that invites us to share an emotion without recourse to speech. Miryam Haddad’s works are a collision of her native East Orient with painting as practiced in Europe and America, and their radiance does not happen by chance. Haddad will be part of the Art Concept gallery in the Contemporary section
Art Dubai 2023 will take place at Madinat Jumeirah from March 1-5, 2023. The fair will present works across four sections: Contemporary, Modern, Bawwaba and Digital. Buy tickets
- Words by Benedetta Ghione