Barjeel Art Foundation collecting essays on modern art in the Arabian Peninsula

Chosen essays will be compiled in a collection published by the foundation in collaboration with the Association of Modern and Contemporary Art of the Arab World, Iran, and Turkey.

The Barjeel Art Foundation and the Association of Modern and Contemporary Art of the Arab World, Iran, and Turkey (AMCA) are welcoming abstracts for essays that will be compiled in a publication that examines the history of modern art in the Arabian Peninsula.

The publication will bring together scholarly voices from various disciplines that explore the various artistic movements, schools, collectives and debates that have emerged in the countries of the Arabian Peninsula – Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, and Yemen – throughout the 20th century.

Contributions might explore the works of a single artist or a collective. They can examine aesthetic debates or contextualise art movements within regional histories.

Scholarly explorations centred on the exchange of art and ideas between Gulf countries and their neighbours – such as Iran, South Asia, East Africa and other Arab States – will also be accepted.

Those who are interested in submitting their proposals are encouraged to send a 500-word abstract, along with a brief, one-page CV to by September 15. Submissions may contain up to three accompanying images in the body of the word document. Proposals can be in either English or Arabic.

"All researchers are invited to submit," Suheyla Takesh, curator of the Barjeel Art Foundation, told The National. "They do not necessarily need to be scholars or academics. However, their papers will still need to pass a scholarly peer review."

The book will be edited by Nada Shabout, Sarah Rogers and Takesh. Accepted contributions will be due by June 1, 2021. All essays will undergo a double-blind, peer-review process before being accepted for publication.

“We encourage submissions that consider the ways in which studies of modern art in the Arabian Peninsula might challenge conventional regional studies of modern Arab art or serve as a catalyst for broader disciplinary concerns with decolonizing art history,” the proposal’s guidelines read.

For more information on submission guidelines, please visit