The second edition World Art Dubai opens tomorrow (6 April) featuring an affordable collection of contemporary artworks comprising paintings, prints, photography, sculptures, mixed media and installations, as well as music performances, prominent talks and interactive workshops delivered by international speakers, all created to make the art world more accessible to everyone.
Running at the Dubai World Trade Centre from 6-9 April, the four-day fair is bringing exclusive, extraordinary, and affordable contemporary art to the UAE and is reducing the pricing gap in the contemporary art sphere between the UAE and other countries.
While the demand for quality art in Dubai continues to grow, the figures speak for themselves: contemporary paintings sold in the UAE change hands for more than USD $35,000 whereas in the United States, the median price in this segment is USD $4,200 and USD $9,125 in the UK. It is evident that art fairs are growing in stature and influence across the world as sales made at art fairs account for 40% (€9.8 billion) of all global gallery sales with the margin separating in-gallery sales significantly narrowing over the past 10 years, according to the TEFAF Art Market Report 2015.
Trixie LohMirmand, Senior Vice President, Exhibitions & Events Management, DWTC, said: “Market figures indicate that there is a gap in the UAE for an event of this nature, which opens up the world of art to everyone and encourages people from all walks of life to visit the fair and learn about starting their art collection and how to best invest in beautiful pieces of art. We’ve grown significantly from the inaugural edition and this year, World Art Dubai will present more than 3,000 pieces of artwork with the median price at USD $4,950.”
Underlining its commitment to deliver a truly global art fair in the heart of the Middle East, the organisers have gathered 140 international galleries, representing more than 300 artists from 30 different countries to offer visitors a unique opportunity to engage with artists and to make their first art purchases. The showcased pieces of work, assessed during a rigorous selection process by the show’s Advisory Committee, comprising of curators, directors and art experts, will range from US$100 to US$10,000.
LohMirmand added: “World Art Dubai challenges the settled art scene and while we feature prominent international galleries from all continents, we also want to promote emerging talents and provide them with the opportunity to perform in front of a bigger audience.”
In line with this vision, the fair has entered into partnership with the International Emerging Artist Award (IEAA) to present the winners’ work at the fair and give its visitors an exclusive chance to learn the new trends in contemporary art as well as an exceptional opportunity to acquire art that may prove to be a substantial investment in the future.
Rebia Naim, Director of International Emerging Artist Award and a member of World Art Dubai Advisory Committee, said: “The mission of the award is to uncover the up-and-coming Emirati and international artists and the fair provides the perfect exposure to recognize the achievement of our laureates.”
Shortlisted by the International Emerging Artist Award for her painting ‘Pomegranate,’ Petra Kaltenbach, a German artist and Dubai resident, will showcase her innovative work based on linking paintings with art videos via a QR code.
“I’m participating with ten paintings and four videos, with prices ranging between AED12,000 and AED25,000, and I feel that technology is opening up a totally new way of artistic work which is great to explore for artists and public alike,” she said.
“World Art Dubai is a great opportunity for me to come in contact with many buyers, other artists, and galleries. Also, the audience can see a huge variety of artwork and buy it with confidence as it’s a strictly curated show.”
The IEAA presentation will take place at 6:00pm on the opening day, 6 April at Red Dot Lounge on the show floor.
Exhibiting for the first time at the show is Studio3 Art Gallery from India, showcasing art pieces of South-East Asian artists Phan Thu Trang, Vietnam, and Dominic Rubio, Philippines, whose innovative approaches to texture and composition earned them international recognition at Art Expo New York, USA and several auction houses, such as Sotheby’s and Masterpiece, respectively.