SIKKA Dubai Arts Fair 2013

Third year running in the Emirate of Dubai: the SIKKA Art Fair. Smashing success this ambitious platform that nurtures Emirati and UAE-based artists. The whole point of SIKKA is to showcase and support emerging artists who are at the commencement of their careers.

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SIKKA Bastikya Art Fair Dubai 2013: f/7.1; 1/60sec; iso-320

SIKKA Bastikya Art Fair Dubai 2013: f/7.1; 1/60sec; ISO-320

Filmmakers, musicians and performing artists, visual artists and poets have all created site-specific works that resonate with Bastakiya, one of the oldest traditional Emirati neighbourhoods in Bur Dubai. This precinct is a network of traditional wind towers overhead, and on the ground cobbled-stoned sikkas or alleyways…

Wind Towers of Bastakiya: f/11; 1/60sec; ISO-2000

Wind Towers of Bastakiya: f/11; 1/60sec; ISO-2000

SIKKA has as its patron His Highness Sheikh Majid Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Chairman of Dubai Culture & Arts Authority, which was established in 2008 to ensure an accelerated growth of Dubai’s cultural industry. This young prince has as his mandate to create out of Dubai an international arts scene and to strengthen grassroots artistic community engagement.

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More than the sum total of skyscrapers, glass and stainless steel, Dubai is fast becoming a multidimensional city attracting internationalists because of what it offers: a cosmopolitan lifestyle and global connectivity. Its high time the local cultural scene wings its way to the vanguard of the globe’s creative hub as well.

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Having lived in the UAE for four years now, I state it as fact that Dubai is committed to promoting inter-cultural understanding and a willing exchange of ideas while building on its rich Arabian identity. National heritage is never compromised by the emergence of artistic talent. On the contrary, it is only enhanced.

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Rambling through the sikka tonight, feasting on art, my friend and I were cooled by northern Spring breezes funneled down to us through the wind towers of Bastakiya. I visited SIKKA Arts Fair as a guest of Bride Club ME Founder Rhiannon Downie, herself a graduate of the arts scene in London. Me of course – well not an artistic bone in my body – save for this ability to scribe and snap away at other’s brilliancy…

SIKKA Art Fair Dubai: f/7.1; 1/60sec; ISO-320

SIKKA Art Fair Dubai: f/7.1; 1/60sec; ISO-320

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