Dazed Digital


A Night in Al Quoz

March 19, 2012

A Satellite Voices guide to the best art openings and parties in Al Quoz tonight.

  • Text by Simone Sebastian

In just a few short hours, the art community in Dubai will be heading out in its finest for a frenetic evening of contemporary art openings at two locales of the city, DIFC Gate Village and Al Quoz. We focus here on Al Quoz, the industrial destination for most of the city’s best art and culture happenings. This is by no means a definitive guide to the various openings, gatherings and happenings taking place this evening, but is definitely where you will find the Satellite Voices editors, enjoying a drink and a chat or two with artists.

To start the evening we suggest a visit to The Jam Jar, which is hosting environmental artist Rebecca Rendell’s new exhibition "The Tension of Balance". Rebecca will be showing drawings and sculptures developed during her three-week residency at The Jam Jar. After a turn around the space (and a quick word with the lovely artist), head back out into deepest, darkest Al Quoz in search of The Third Line, the gallery that arguably started the area’s art boom. Veterans of the city’s art scene, The Third Line has been exhibiting works by Middle Eastern artists since 2005 – all from the same space in the heart of Al Quoz. Tonight they will be showing works by Lebanese artists Joana Hadjithomas and Khalil Joreige, in a show entitled "Lebanese Rocket Society Part III, IV, V".  Says Sunny Rahbar, one of the directors of the gallery: “Their exhibition will explore three new bodies of works through a video and sound installation, a photographic series and the making of a rug."

With two spaces down, you should be ready to hit Alserkal Avenue – the mammoth warehouse complex that houses over 15 art and design spaces, most of which will be hosting openings tonight. If we have one piece of advice it is this – leave your car at home.

Starting from the galleries at the back, we recommend checking out Carbon 12 who will be showcasing a solo show from rising Iranian star Sara Rahbar called “Restless Violence”. Kouroush Nouri of Carbon 12 describes Rahbar’s newest offering as her “strongest, and most brutal”.  

Next are two newcomers to the block – Pakistani gallery Grey Noise, and design studio FN Designs. Grey Noise will be showing works from Lahore-based artists Ehsan ul Haq and Iqra Tanveer, while FN will be throwing open their doors for an edition of SKETCH, their long-running series of live art events. Sheikha Wafa Hasher Al Maktoum of FN also tells us that they will be launching an apparel and accessories brand called 8. 

Across the way is artist studio space Satellite,  the venue for the launch of ‘THE STATE’ a journal and sociopolitical forum developed by the not-for-profit art organization Traffic. Nina Trojanovic from Traffic is looking forward to sharing THE STATE with the public – “the sleepless nights, endless cups of coffee, cigarettes, foosball, and Kitty talk finally pay off for the editors…”. Satellite will also be hosting a new piece by one of the Art Dubai artists-in-residence, Fayçal Baghriche. We’ve been told to expect a massive wall in the middle of the space. We can’t wait…

Next door to Satellite is Gallery Isabelle Van Den Eynde, showing Iranian superstars Ramin and Rokni Haerizadeh and Hesam Rahmanian.  Their show "I Put It There, You Name It." will apparently recreate the ambience of the trio’s shared home in Dubai. If their legendary parties are anything to go by, then it's safe to say that you can expect an absolute art riot.

Image credits:  

Sara Rahbar 'Comfortably Numb', 2011. Image courtesy of the artist and Carbon 12, Dubai
Ehsan Ul Haq 'Rooster', 2011. Image courtest of the artist and Grey Noise
Installation view of "I Put It There, You Name It.", courtesy of Gallery Van Den Eynde, Dubai

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