In a bid to create a platform that eventually contributes to the development of a public art infrastructure and even goes towards influencing government policies, the British Council and a UAE-based creative company The Domino will be hosting the first in a series of talks entitled Art in the Public Realm. With a list of reputable speakers including Cedar Lewisohn, the curator of a street art exhibition at the Tate Modern and Michaela Crimmin, a course tutor at the Royal College of Art, the organisational team hope that the debate will be animated as well as productive. "The panellists will discuss ways in which governments, artists and local communities can work together in making this art form possible and avoid negative connotations," explains Michel Bechara, head of projects at the British Council.
Also on the panel is Sultan Sooud al Qassemi, founder and chairman of Barjeel Art Foundation in Sharjah and a respected commentator on Middle Eastern news and events. Art fans might be excited too by the presence of El Seed, an Arabic graffiti artist who recently decorated Tunisia's tallest minaret at the Jara Mosque in his hometown of Gabes with his characteristic painted lettering.
"The UAE is multicultural country with an established art scene; this makes it in ideal location to bridge the communication and opinions from different experts from the region and abroad," says Fathima Mohiuddin, curator, artist and founder of artist talent management agency The Domino. She added that the event will create valuable discussion on the nature of public spaces and their interaction with art and creative practise.
Bechara elaborates that the overarching aim of the talk and the ensuing series is to build an art scene not only in galleries and creative hubs but all around the UAE. "Public Art is a unique form of expression as it enables artists to engage with communities and reflect on socially relevant themes."
Art in the Public Realm (in conjunction with the British Council) kicks off today at 3pm at the Jumeirah Creekside Hotel in Dubai. RSVP by emailing email@example.com