Arcadia Blank featured in new book, 'Street Messages'

Street Messages (7)
Street Messages (7)

Congrats to Dubai’s own Arcadia Blank (@metatronisbored) for being featured in Nicolas Ganz’s new book 'Street Messages', along with 80 other artists from round the world  who work or have worked exclusively or partially with text including Flint, Samo (Basquiat & Al Diaz), Jenny Holzer, Banksy, Ron English, Know Hope and Murad Subay.

Ganz is the author of the classic graffiti documentary 'Graffiti World', and his book features a forward by American photographer and graffiti historian, Jim Prigoff. 'Street Messages' is the first publication that delivers a deep insight into this literary form of expression in the world of global street art and offers a historic background to written messages in public spaces.

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Street Messages (8)
Street Messages (1)
Street Messages (1)

The vast body of information and numerous exclusive quotes and words of wisdom makes 'Street Messages' the first book to shed some light on this as yet undocumented form of street art culture. 'Street Messages' is published by Dokument Press and is available at all good book stores  across Europe and the U.S, and on Amazon.com.

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Street Messages (5)

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Arcadia Blank is featured in our limited edition print collection with a series of the artist's own photographs of his street art around the UAE. See our full range available for sale online here.

 

In Review: 'Portrait Of A Nation' at Emirates Palace

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"If there is one word to describe the United Arab Emirates it is 'United'”, said artist Amna Al Dabbagh, who was one of the featured artists in ‘Portrait of a Nation’, an exhibition that was displayed in Emirates Palace, Abu Dhabi, from April 11th till May 10th 2016. Part of the Abu Dhabi Festival, ‘Portrait of a Nation’ celebrated Emirati artists and their works focused on the UAE's culture, architecture, nature, identity, traditions and religion. You can find out more information about the exhibition here.

At first entry, visitors were greeted with a large mirrored piece that had an immediately recognisable shape for people who have been brought up in the UAE. Etched into this mirror were the lines tracing the UAE’s borders along with texts in numerous languages as well as the title of the artwork, ‘United’. This mirror artwork by Amna Al Dabbagh united all 7 Emirates together with the languages of the 200 plus nationalities, as well as the reflection of exhibition visitors who also make up this nation we all call home.

Another familiar sight for the UAE’s residents were the cafeterias and shawarma shops populating Khalid Mezaina’s series of illustrations, 'Cafeterias of the UAE', which document urban life in the UAE. Speaking about the drawings, Khalid says: "the UAE has a rich history of ‘shawarma’ shops and cafeterias all across the country, catering to not just specific communities in the UAE, but the entire nation as a whole. Emiratis, expats and everyone in between flock to these cafeterias daily for an affordable sandwich, a humorously titled juice, or a plastic cup of sugared, steaming hot chai! these cafeterias are iconic structures in the UAE's culture and urban landscape. Not only are they places of social encounters, but places of deep context in understanding food culture of the UAE. Through illustration, I would like to archive these cafeterias as important, iconic institutions and its importance to their communities. In the UAE, major cities like Dubai and Abu Dhabi are growing at an exceptionally fast pace, changing the landscape of a city tremendously, with things of the past unfortunately getting lost. Only time will tell if these cafeterias will survive through these current changes. I hope these illustrations would act as a form of documentation and nostalgia for anyone that has encountered these cafeterias while growing up in the UAE."

Khalid is part of our limited edition art print collection and you can see our range of prints by the artist here.

Another piece which was an eye catcher, was Aisha Juma's 'Inner Pilgrimage', which created a meditative experience for visitors within the gallery, allowing them a moment of peace and personal space in this exhibition.

For those of you who didn't manage to catch the exhibition before it closed, you can see more in our gallery below.

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Last Day of SIKKA 2016

Sadly today is the last day of SIKKA 2016 as Dubai Art Season 2016 draws to a close for another year and the Dubai art world slows down ahead of summer. Make sure you take a trip down to catch the fair nestled in the peaceful heritage quarter of Al Fahidi and discover art amongst the alleyways and courtyards. For more information, the SIKKA facebook page is your best resource, with daily updates on the programmed. The fair closes tonight with the Emirati monodrama, "Why would i wait for?", written and directed by Hafidh A.Thani, tonight, 8:30 pm in House 19, and of course the SIKKA Closing party, 7-11pm.

For those not in the know, SIKKA is an annual showcase organised by Dubai Culture specifically designed to feature UAE and GCC contemporary art practices and initiatives, through a diversity of artistic talent and stance, providing opportunity to experience home-grown creativity at its liveliest and best, in the heart of Dubai.

This year artist Matt Ryder created two new large-scale paintings for SIKKA, which you can see in House 16. These artworks look at the process of grief and the recovery process, through the genre of landscape painting. Ryder uses symbolism, scale, realism and colour to represent this full cycle of emotion. Matt is part of our limited edition art print collection and you can see our range of Matt Ryder prints here.

Also featured in both our print collection and in SIKKA 2016 is renowned Emirati painter Mohammed Al Qassab, whose work can be seen as part of the Emirates Fine Arts Society exhibition in House 31. You can check out our range of available art prints by Al Qassab here.

His fiery abstract painting 0n show took us back to one of our past art consulting projects, when we commissioned Al Qassab for 2 paintings for the Arabic Gallery in Kempinski Mall of the Emirates back in 2013 (pictured below). These paintings merged elements inspired by traditional Sadu fabric with the vibrant reds and oranges of the desert landscape.

If you're looking to pick up a purchase at SIKKA, don't miss FN Design Studio's pop up shop in House 42, which stocks a range of eclectic and arty items. This includes this lovely screenprint from Kathryn Wilson, which she's created as a limited edition piece to raise money for Water.org...get it while it lasts!

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Some more from our adventures during Art Week 2016...

artweek
artweek