All posts tagged: Culture Dubai

Re-Possessing a Funktioning Utopia

FN stumbled across a great little exhibition at the weekend whilst wandering around the Sharjah Art Foundations new galleries: Chaos into Clarity: Re-Possessing a Funktioning Utopia. The curator, Shannon Ayers Holden, investigates the Aesthetic of Funk through an exploration of the radical power of transformation, the theme of transcendence and the presentation of a new world material culture as seen through the works of three artists from the African Diaspora. American textile artist Xenobia Bailey, Moroccan born photographer and designer Hassan Hajjaj and British Trinidadian filmmaker and sculptor Zak Ove, FN has wanted to see some of his work for while. This was so good, that we wish there could have been more – further work, a  catalogue and a longer essay by the curator. Within the context of the UAE, a nation of flux and rapid change, it was enriching to see ‘work that can encompass both the presence of the past and a sense of clarity for the present.’ (Chris Lord) Shannon Ayers Holden is a resident of Dubai, we look forward to …

Dubai’s theatre and arts centre

DUBAI COMMUNITY THEATRE AND ARTS CENTRE   Dubai Community Theatre & Arts Centre (DUCTAC) aims to contribute to the creative and cultural development of Dubai by presenting and hosting a programme of events and participatory activities for Dubai’s many multi-national communities and visitors alike. The Theatre & Arts Centre is the first modern, non-profit, cross-community creative centre in the Gulf. This flagship project was the brainchild of local theatre-lovers, arts enthusiasts, artists and business people who recognised the need for an entertainment and educational centre for the community of Dubai. The centre offers a range of workshops and activities for all ages and next door is a small art and craft materials shop where you can by most materials from easels to palette knives. You can find them at http://www.ductac.org Or email info@ductac.org Or phone for bookings on +971 (0) 4341 4777

REPRESENT III – Hamra Abbas

Hamra Abbas represented by Lawrie Shabibi Hamra Abbas’s work is playful and unpredictable, it has a definite presence, but is so versatile that it is hard to pin down exactly what it is about an Abbas work that tells you it is hers. Fat Nancy takes a look at why she likes it so much. Firstly and overarching, Abbas’s work is pure. In its use of colour, its concepts and humour, she sticks to absolute and direct messaging. The colours she uses are sharp, clear and translucent, even when used in prints. They remind FN of David Batchelor’s works, often managing to bring a similar brightness to the fore without the need for artificial light, using instead natural light, colour on paper, on glass, with food colouring in plasticine, as a tool to manipulate and reflect the intensity she desires. Abbas’s life, and consequently her work, could be said to be somewhat fractured – coming from Pakistan and a deeply Islamic community and now living and working in the USA. Perhaps it is this contradiction that makes it addictively erratic, fickle and playfully …

REPRESENTED II – Mehreen Murtaza

Artist Mehreen Murtaza – represented by Grey Noise Mehreen Murtaza’s visual narratives intertwine a traditional context with popular culture. Taking their imagery from both Sufi culture and the skewed logic of science fiction, her labour-intensive digital collages are a virtual world that fuses the natural with the mechanical, where technology plays the role of challenging religious myth, superstition and ritual. Found images – sourced from print, digital and electronic media – come together in her work to form intriguing collages. Lawyers assemble on streets amid a burst of sinister red; a Big Brother-like figure watches the goings-on from the heavens; and a superhero takes flight into a great gig in the sky. Those who are aware of political and social upheavals in Pakistan will find enough resonances in Murtaza’s work without being oppressed by the obvious. Murtaza’s work draws on Stuckist and Pop Art influences, Richard Hamilton in particular, with an absorption of the nuances of indigenous iconography –  miniature painting, film posters and Truck Art imagery of Pakistan. Her work also reminds Fat Nancy …

The Inside Guide IV. Dubai

No amount of guidebook research can replace local knowledge so FNND has asked locals about their city and how they interact with it. They live and work in the city and kindly provided their favourite spots. This is the third in a series, with part three focused on Dubai. So meet Dubai resident Reiner Erlings who loves the old and the new in his city. What you do for a living? I am a composer and music producer based here in Dubai. The main thing I do is to compose original music, sound design, and foley for advertising, TV and film projects, such as TV/online ads, cinema campaigns, and (short) films. I have a recording studio where I work with artists and bands from the region as a producer and mixing engineer. How long have you been living in Dubai? I’ve been in Dubai for almost nine years now. How did you end up here? I grew up in Oman, so have been coming to Dubai for many years on weekends and breaks. After going …