x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 27 July 2017

Emirati art in Shanghai show

Rising stars of the Emirati art world are to have their work showcased alongside established names in an exhibition at the UAE pavilion at Expo 2010 in Shanghai.

People have been queuing for hours to see the UAE Pavilion at Expo 2010.
People have been queuing for hours to see the UAE Pavilion at Expo 2010.

Beijing // Rising stars of the Emirati art world are to have their work showcased alongside established names in an exhibition at the UAE pavilion at Expo 2010 in Shanghai. The exhibition will feature, among others, the digital artist Jalal Luqman, the jewellery maker Azza al Qubaisi, and Ebtisam Abdul Aziz, who is both an internationally exhibited artist and a writer.

Exhibits will include black-and-white photographs showing, for example, women in traditional dress and the contrasts of present-day life in the UAE, such as farmers who rear goats in view of the Burj Khalifa, the world's tallest building in Dubai. There are also modern art pieces and montages inspired by the construction industry, among others. The exhibits will be on show at the business centre to coincide with Expo 2010's UAE pavilion day on Monday.

The exhibition, developed by the Dubai-based art organisation Tashkeel, is opening after organisers revealed that the pavilion has attracted about 1.2 million visitors since the expo began on May 1. Such is the popularity of the pavilion, designed by the renowned British architect Lord Foster to resemble a sand dune, that visitors willingly queue for several hours to enter. Lateefa bint Maktoum, the founder of Tashkeel, said in a statement that she was "honoured and proud" to accept the pavilion's invitation.

"The exhibition that we are preparing will showcase the work of both established and young, emerging Emirati artists and will demonstrate the dynamic future of the visual arts in the UAE," she added. The UAE pavilion contains a series of theatres with specially produced films showcasing the history and modern-day life of the Emirates. The films range from Emirati culture to the pearling industry, as well as the contribution expatriates have made to the country. Some people featured in the films will appear at the pavilion as part of the celebrations; there will also be a traditional dance show.

Peter Vine, the co-ordinator of the UAE pavilion, said he expected that the total number of visitors would exceed two million by the time the expo finishes at the end of October. While other pavilions had attracted more visitors, he said numbers entering the UAE pavilion were being carefully controlled and that typically people had to queue for four hours. Unlike many of the other pavilions, which will be demolished when the expo finishes, the UAE building will be dismantled, sent to the UAE and rebuilt as a permanent attraction.

@Email:dbardsley@thenational.ae