Art in the capital

Abu Dhabi Art returns for the eighth season with a smaller but powerful package

Several art enthusiasts gathered at the Fairmont Bab Al Bahr in Abu Dhabi for the opening reception of the "No White Walls" annual art show. Delores Johnson / The National
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In recent years, art fairs across the world have gained notoriety not for the art they show but for the amount of art they promote. From Istanbul to Dubai, art fairs in the region have been noticeably increasing in size but not necessarily in quality. Abu Dhabi’s annual art fair, which opens for its eighth season today, is bucking this trend. With booths from 35 galleries, this fair is smaller than regional rivals but the quality of the work on display will surely send ripples through the art world.

From Gu Dexin’s work of thousands of fresh bananas to the “born-again” work from Azerbaijan and the UAE collected by curator Fabrice Bousteau, the capital’s fair promises to deliver diversity in the contemporary works it will showcase.

Regardless of your taste in art, this year’s fair is an ideal way to welcome the winter season by viewing an engaging collection that will surely have you talking, debating and perhaps even scratching your head. It is also a chance to see for yourself the ever-changing cultural landscape of Saadiyat Island.