Typically the art scene’s quieter period, summer is also the time for galleries and institutions to gear up for the new season come autumn. Though there are fewer shows to see, there are two exciting arrivals: the return of Sharjah Art Foundation’s Sharjapan, an exhibition that brings Japanese culture to the UAE, and Made in Tashkeel, the art and design studio’s annual showcase of works by members and exhibiting artists.
A number of online activities by Warehouse421 and Guggenheim Abu Dhabi are also on the calendar, as well as a new local art fair to be held at Dubai’s Alserkal Avenue this month.
Here are some art shows and activities to see and do during the summer, if you're planning on staying in the UAE.
Sharjapan at Sharjah Art Foundation
Opening on Saturday, July 24, the third iteration of Sharjapan, Sharjah Art Foundation’s exhibition dedicated to Japanese art and cultural practices, falls under the theme Remain Calm: Solitude and Connectivity in Japanese Architecture.
Curated by Yuko Hasegawa, the exhibition will reflect on the role of architecture in our lives by examining the works of Japanese architects. Drawing inspiration from the 13th-century poet Kamo no Chomei, the show explores the hermitage and how it functions as a prototype for Japanese architecture that bears spiritual aspects.
The show will include sculptural models, multimedia installations, drawings and photographs of various architectural projects in Japan.
Sharjapan will run until Friday, October 1.
More information is available at sharjahart.org
Made in Tashkeel returns
Tashkeel’s annual group exhibition returns this summer after a year-long hiatus. The showcase displays the works of Tashkeel’s members, workshop participants and recent exhibiting artists over the last two years.
For its 11th edition, Made in Tashkeel features more than 65 works by 40-plus artists. Works on view demonstrate the range of members’ practices, from photography, mixed media and sculpture to textile work, video, installation and calligraphy.
Emirati artists presenting their works this year include Abdulla Lutfi, Eman Al Hashemi, Noura Alserkal, Khalid Mezaina and Badr Abaas.
Tashkeel will provide scheduled guided tours of the show throughout August.
The studio is also hosting workshops in linocut, screen-printing and risograph for adults as part of the exhibition’s programming.
Made in Tashkeel 2021 will run until Tuesday, September 7.
More information is available at tashkeel.org
Warehouse421 Summer Programme
For its summer programme, Warehouse421 in Abu Dhabi is hosting film screenings, talks and workshops, both in-person and online, for all age groups.
On Tuesday and Wednesday, July 27 and 28, product designer Ban Hawamdeh will take participants through the process of making shoes from scratch using materials such as foam and fabric. Suitable for ages 15 and above, the in-person workshop will cover sewing techniques and pattern-making.
In August, writer Ibrahim Nehme will present an online workshop on magazine-making as an introduction to independent publishing, and in September, designer Anoud Al Zaben will host a tablescaping workshop that teaches participants how to artfully set and arrange elements on a dining table following a chosen theme and drawing inspiration from the surrounding settings.
More information is available at warehouse421.ae
Aura Art Fair at Alserkal Avenue
A new local art fair will be held at Alserkal Avenue on Friday and Saturday, July 30 and 31.
Aura Art Fair is a small-scale event showcasing local talent in the UAE, including artists, musicians, poets, performers, designers and more. The programme includes live performances by bands and musicians in Dubai, including the K-pop inspired dance group thepixiesdance and singer Elliee.
There will also be an open mic session for poets, singers and musicians, as well as stalls for artists to sell their works.
It will take place in Warehouse 46.
New exhibition at Louvre Abu Dhabi’s Children’s Museum
After a year of closure because of the pandemic, Louvre Abu Dhabi’s Children’s Museum reopened in June with a new interactive exhibition centred on emotions.
A number of artworks from the museum’s collection will also be on view as part of the exhibition, allowing children to study the art and relate the subjects of the works to the four basic emotions of joy, sadness, fear and anger.
Entry to Louvre Abu Dhabi and the Children’s Museum is free for visitors aged 18 and under. Admission tickets for accompanying adults are valid for both the museum’s galleries and exhibitions, as well as the Children’s Museum.
More information is available at louvreabudhabi.ae
In the Studio by Guggenheim Abu Dhabi
Guggenheim Abu Dhabi’s virtual programme In the Studio will conclude in July.
The initiative supports Abu Dhabi artists by providing them with a platform to share their practice.
On Wednesday, July 28, the selected artists, Afra Al Dhaheri, Mays Albaik and Simrin Mehra-Agarwal will present a live-streamed panel discussion to talk about their work and being an artist in the UAE. The panel will be moderated by Guggenheim Abu Dhabi curators Sara bin Safwan and Jessica Cerasi.
Guggenheim Abu Dhabi: In the Studio sessions will be available to stream on the CulturAll.ae website and Abu Dhabi Culture social media platforms