September 10, 2018 - Jameel Arts Centre - Comprehensive lineup of exhibitions and programmes announced for November opening ceremony
September 10, 2018

Jameel Arts Centre

Lydia Ourahmane, Land of the Sun, 2014. Installation, perspex, recycled engine oil, lemon tree, tyre, 1.54m x 2.13m. Photo: Gunnar Meier. Courtesy of the artist.

Comprehensive lineup of exhibitions and programmes announced for November opening ceremony

Opening: November 11, 4–11pm

Jameel Arts Centre
Jaddaf Waterfront
United Arab Emirates

T +971 4 873 9800
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Art Jameel, the independent organisation that supports arts, education and heritage in the Middle East, today announces the much-anticipated inaugural programming for Jameel Arts Centre, opening in Dubai on November 11, 2018. Designed as a 10,000-square metre, three-storey, multi-disciplinary space by UK-based Serie Architects, Jameel Arts Centre is the first non-governmental contemporary arts institution of its kind in the Gulf.

Reflecting the institution’s commitment to dynamic programming that resonates with a diverse audience, Jameel Arts Centre launches with a series of four solo shows—Artist’s Rooms—by eminent artists from the Middle East and Asia; a curated group exhibition, Crude, that considers the complex theme of oil within both historic and contemporary contexts; and a selection of large-scale installations and sculptural works, several newly commissioned.

Spread across five galleries, the group exhibition—Crude—brings together 17 artists and collectives from the region and beyond to explore oil as an agent of social, cultural and economic transformation across the region, as well as a driver of geo-political upheaval. Developed by Sharjah- and New York-based curator Murtaza Vali, Crude considers some of the complex histories of oil as a catalyst of modernity across the Middle East, tracing its effects through the archives, infrastructures, and technologies it has produced. The exhibition includes works by: Latif Al Ani, Manal AlDowayan, Monira Al Qadiri, Alessandro Balteo-Yazbeck, Media Farzin, GCC (Khalid Al Gharaballi, Nanu Al-Hamad, Abdullah Al-Mutairi, Fatima Al Qadiri, Monira Al Qadiri, Aziz Al Qatimi, Barrak Alzaid, Amal Khalaf), Raja’a Khalid, Lydia Ourahmane, Houshang Pezeshknia, Monira Al Qadiri, Hassan Sharif, Wael Shawky, Nasrin Tabatabai and Babak Afrassiabi, Rayyane Tabet, Hajra Waheed, Michael John Whelan, Lantan Xie and Ala Younis

Artist’s Rooms is an on-going series of exhibitions that focus on a single artist represented in the Art Jameel collection; collaborative in nature, the shows are developed with the artist and often feature new commissions that respond to the Centre’s curatorial themes.

Marking Art Jameel’s long-standing interest in furthering cultural links between the Gulf and Japan, artist Chiharu Shiota has been commissioned to create a site-specific installation for her Artist’s Room. For this significant, new piece she was inspired by the UAE’s identity as a port city, a place of trade and confluence, and the Centre’s waterfront location.

Saudi Arabia’s best-known female artist Maha Malluh is greatly influenced by her spiritual connection to the historic region of Najd, Saudi Arabia. This first solo presentation of the artist’s work in the UAE features large-scale sculptural installations comprised of everyday, domestic materials.

An influential artist, teacher and women’s rights activist in Pakistan, the late Lala Rukh’s Artist’s Room supplements her recent video Rupak (2016)—which debuted at Documenta 14 and is shown for the first time in the Middle East—with older works on paper, revealing her long standing interest in rhythm, memory and the body.

The video and textile works presented in Lebanese artist Mounira Al Solh’s show are typically sharp, humorous and wry and deal with the violent and sometimes absurd force of political events on personal lives, as well as her ongoing interest in the form and function of language.

In addition to gallery-based exhibitions, Jameel Arts Centre features major installations by local and international artists that interact with the building itself: the lobby features a new, interactive work by Lara Favaretto; a sculptural work by Vikram Divecha is suspended above one of the Centre’s seven gardens; Shaikha Al Mazrou creates a sculptural sectioned glasshouse for the first in an annual series of commissioned projects for the Artist’s Garden; and the duo Alia Farid and Aseel Al Yacoub’s fantastical botanic garden, awarded through fom the first edition of Art Jameel Commissions, takes over the Centre’s Roof Terrace.

Further details will be announced regarding the public programming accompanying the exhibitions; Jameel Library; Gallery 9, devoted to film and video; and other cultural developments.


Press contacts
Ciara Phillips                                      
T +971-55-650-7431
ciara [​at​]    

Katrina Weber Ashour
T +1-917-601-8618
katrina [​at​]   

About Art Jameel
Art Jameel supports artists and creative communities. Current initiatives include running heritage institutes and restoration programmes, plus a broad range of arts and educational initiatives for all ages. The organisation’s programmes foster the role of the arts in building open, connected communities; at a time of flux and dramatic societal shifts, this role is understood as more crucial than ever. 

Art Jameel’s model is collaborative: major institutional partners include Delfina Foundation, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Prince’s School of Traditional Arts and  the Victoria and Albert Museum. Locally, the organisation works with individuals and organisations to develop innovative programming that embraces both ancient and new technologies, and encourages entrepreneurship and the development of cultural networks.

In 2018-2019, Art Jameel is set to open two new cultural centres: Hayy: Creative Hub, a major complex for the creative industries in Saudi Arabia, and Jameel Arts Centre, a contemporary arts institution in the UAE.

Art Jameel is positioned alongside Community Jameel, and complements its sister organisation’s work in promoting positive social change, job creation and poverty alleviation across the Middle East, North Africa and Turkey.

Jameel Arts Centre
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