Art reflects reality

The expansion of Alserkal Avenue reflects Dubai’s strides to become a global art hub

A view of Al Quoz Arts Festival at Alserkal Avenue in Dubai last year. Christopher Pike / The National
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Sometimes flowers bloom in the most unlikely locations. This could be said of Alserkal Avenue, an art hub that has flourished in the unlikely environs of Al Quoz in Dubai since opening its doors in 2007.

Within a few years, the gallery district has become the emirate’s answer to London’s Hoxton and New York’s West Chelsea – industrial areas that are now homes to thriving art scenes – a point that will be underscored this week as gallerists, curators and creatives arrive in the emirate for Art Dubai.

As The National reported yesterday, the avenue is expanding, accommodating about 40 new spaces, representing a much wider range of artistic and creative arts. The Yard, an open-air space, will display commissioned artworks during Art Dubai and host a pop-up cinema screening short films. The avenue's growth mirrors the developing Dubai cultural landscape in that its expansion appears necessary, sustainable and compelling.