Dubai Culture begins the countdown to a distinguished edition of Sikka Art Fair 2019

  • This year’s edition marks the ‘Year of Tolerance’ with its theme
    ‘An Open Window to Art and Tolerance’
  • The Fair is in line with Dubai Culture’s vision to bring happiness in the community, promoting the establishment and development of creative industries.
  • The Fair is held under Dubai Art Season, the umbrella initiative by Dubai Culture

Dubai Culture & Arts Authority (Dubai Culture), the Emirate’s dedicated entity for culture, arts, heritage, and literature in the UAE, organised in the buildup to the launch of the Sikka Art Fair 2019 a meeting with media professionals and artists participating in the fair. This year’s edition is being held under the patronage of HH Sheikha Latifa bint Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors at Dubai Culture.

Saeed Al Naboodah, Acting Director General at Dubai Culture, said: “In recognition of the multiculturalism of Dubai and its respect for all faiths and cultures, the fair will emphasise tolerance. Therefore, we chose the title ‘An Open Window to Art and Tolerance’ to celebrate the ‘Year of Tolerance’ initiative, emphasising cultural diversity, harmony, and a strong community fabric in the UAE. The exhibition will achieve many other goals, chief of which the sponsorship of UAE and regional artists, offering them the perfect opportunity to showcase their works to a wide local and international audience in Dubai. We will also hold many specialised workshops for the artists under the supervision of experts in various fields to achieve our mission to create opportunities for novice artists and to embrace and encourage talent by providing them with the ideal platform to hone their skills.”

Walid Ahmad, Head of Dubai Art Season, presented a comprehensive presentation about the ninth edition of Sikka Art Fair, organised under the Dubai Art Season umbrella, now in its sixth edition, and taking place during March and April 2019. Sikka Art Fair is launched by Dubai Culture to celebrate the Emirate’s growing creative and cultural scene through a rich array of unique cultural and artistic activities being held over two full months throughout Dubai, including outdoor art projects, interactive initiatives, workshops, exhibitions, panel discussions, and performing arts.

Sikka Art Fair 2019 will take place 16 – 24 March in Al Fahidi Historical Neighbourhood and will introduce a number of participating artists, conduct interviews with them, and highlight their works and previous participations.

 Walid Ahmad added: “The Young artists will seek to embody the message of the exhibition through their artistic work that encourages participation, invites others to meet on the same path, and integrate in an environment that supports dialogue and coexistence. We will provide visitors with a fun and enjoyable experience for all age groups as part of their visit to Al Fahidi Historical Neighbourhood to discover many of its landmarks, such as the historical designs of the old buildings and houses, and art galleries. Visitors can enjoy delicious local meals offered by kiosks scattered throughout the neighbourhood, and participate in workshops and chat discussions as well as enjoy a selection of evening activities that will spread the joy of the place with spectacular visual and audio presentations until 8pm.”

For the first time this year, Sikka Art Fair will offer two distinctive but intertwined experiences: ‘Sikka by Day,’ celebrating Al Fahidi tenants, the neighbourhood, and their art exhibitions and installations; and ‘Sikka by Night’ where multiple cultural activations will be hosted. The neighbourhood will welcome its visitors — as of 11am — to its streets to explore the spectacular Sikka exhibitions and enjoy a selection of evening activities that will spread the joy of the place with spectacular visual and audio performances until late hours of the day.

In his presentation, Walid Ahmad noted that the participation of such a large number of novice artists posed an ideal opportunity for visitors to see many of the beautiful and distinctive works created by participating artists who see the exhibition as an incubator for their creations, and a global platform to interact with experts, critics, and art aficionados, stimulating and encouraging them to progress in this area.

Exhibition participants included new local ones — Shough Fardan, Fatma Abdullah, Noura Al Neyadi, and Rasha Al Saffarini — and a number of artists who had participated in previous editions — Sheikha Al Awadhi, Amina Al Jarman, Jaber Al Haddad, and Ahmad Al Enazi among others. The new edition will attract a total of 23 Emirati artists — whose works will be of particular interest because they will provide an in-depth look at the Emirate’s art scene — representing 48% of the total number of 48 participating artists from around the world.

This year, SIKKA Art Fair is presenting special projects, including ‘UAE at the Crossroads’ by the Zayed University students, curated by Sabrina De Turk. There will also be a number of installations such as ‘Mangroves;’ ‘Breathing Roots; nkita Garg an’ and ‘Baggage Carriers’ by Richard Ketley and Nkhensani Rihlampfu, supervised by Hassan Bello and presented by the Ajala Project.

Dubai Culture will facilitate access to the SIKKA Art Fair site, underlining its commitment to involve all segments of society segments in the grand art celebration and provide many options and alternatives through its cooperation with the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA). Visitors can reach the venue by taking public buses through Al Fahidi Bus Station, the metro through Al Fahidi Metro Station, Careem, or even by abra for as little as AED 1 per trip.

Additionally, Dubai Culture has partnered with Careem to provide SIKKA’s visitors with a special 30% discount on two rides when they book a taxi using the code SIKKA2019. The code is valid from 14 to 26 March 2019 for ‘now’ and ‘later’ bookings across all car types excluding GO, UNCHR and BOX, with a maximum discount of AED 30 per ride. Valet parking is also provided at the Al Fahidi Historical Neighborhood on a first-come-first-serve basis.


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