The historic site of Qasr Al Hosn has announced three new exhibitions to mark the beginning of its cultural programme for this year. Taking place within the complex’s Cultural Foundation and House of Artisans, the exhibitions will be accompanied by events and workshops across the site and will feature a mix of home-grown and regional talent alongside international artists.
The first exhibition, Weaving Cultures: From Mexico to the UAE, is set within the House of Artisans, which is dedicated to preserving and promoting traditional Emirati crafts and practices. The show features textiles and items from the collections of the Mexican non-profit Fomento Cultural Citibanamex, AC and House of Artisans. Interlacing the two cultures, the exhibitions will feature works by artists from both countries, encompassing everything from sculptures, paintings, woodwork and textiles.
Next door, Cultural Foundation will host two solo exhibitions by Emiratis — General Behaviour by artist and photographer Farah Al Qasimi and visual artist Mohamed Al Astad’s Another Perspective.
Al Qasimi's show explores consumer culture in the UAE while challenging perceptions of reality through a series of photos and videos she took between 2012 and 2021. Although she currently lives in Brooklyn, New York, Al Qasimi's work zooms in on daily life in the UAE, as well as aspects of identity along the intersections of gender, nationality and social class. In 2021, she was shortlisted for the Louis Roederer Discovery Award.
Al Astad has shown regularly at the Cultural Foundation and is known for his use of sea sand and rust to create dramatic visual pieces. In Another Perspective, his works will be arranged alongside large-scale paintings to create an interactive installation, providing viewers with an immersive experience.
The three exhibitions will run until Tuesday, September 20.
Along with the new shows, the Department of Culture and Tourism — Abu Dhabi is launching a series of events and workshops across Al Hosn, featuring a mix of artists from several genres. The programme at Cultural Foundation will also include concerts by Kuwaiti pop star Humood Alkhuder and celebrated Tunisian singer Lotfi Bouchnak and a performance by French-Algerian dancer and choreographer Kader Attou.
House of Artisans will also host workshops on traditional handicrafts as well as performances. Specific dates for the programmes as well as Ramadan and Eid specials will also be announced soon.
Al Hosn is home to Qasr Al Hosn, the oldest and most significant historic building in the capital, which housed the ruling family for centuries and was the emirate’s original seat of government. In January, the cultural site was awarded the gold accolade at the 2021 World Architecture News Awards, topping a shortlist featuring six other international sites in the Mixed Use category.
Entry to Al Hosn is free, but access to specific workshops and performances will be ticketed. A green pass on the Al Hosn app is required for entry in line with Covid-19 and security protocols. More information is available at qasralhosn.ae
Scroll through the gallery for more pictures of the Al Hosn cultural site: