United Arab Emirates

Shaikha El Kutbi

Shaikha El Kutbi is a visual artist who works primarily in photography, drawing, and installation art.  Her work is self-reflexive, exploring themes of self-awareness and perceptibility and often blurring the line between fiction and reality. 

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Al Anood Al Obeidli

Al Anood Al Obeidli is an Emirati visual artist from Abu Dhabi, UAE, who works primarily in collage producing works that are almost sculptural in form.  Born in 1990, this young artist received her degree in Visual Arts from the College of Arts and Creative Enterprises, Zayed University, Abu Dhabi, and in 2014 participated in the Sheikha Salama Bint Hamdan Al Nahyan Foundation Emerging Artist Fellowship Programme.  Al Obeidli is a member of the Emirates Fine Arts Society and has held a solo exhibition of her installation work, Manarat Al Saadiyat (2017), at Abu Dhabi Art as well as several group exhibitions in her native UAE including the Sharjah Art Foundation, Sharjah; Al Serkal Avenue, Dubai; New York University, Abu Dhabi and Tashkeel, Dubai.  Her work is held in several private and public collections.

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Salama Al Mazrouie

Born in the United Arab Emirates, Salama Al Mazrouie graduated from the School of Fine Arts, UAE University, and is a member of the Emirates Fine Art Society.  Focusing primarily on portraiture, Al Mazrouie’s expressive paintings capture the sincerity of her subjects and her experimentation with different techniques and colors imbues her work with dynamic energy that in her words could not be captured in photography.  Al Mazrouie has contributed widely to the UAE art scene, running workshops that focused on the exploration of watercolor, pastel, and oil paint.  Throughout her artistic career, she has held over 80 exhibitions and was awarded ‘The Arab Woman Award in 2013’ for her contribution to arts and culture. The artist continues to live and work in the UAE.

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Hamdan Bity Al Shamsi

Born in Al-Ain city in 1981, Hamdan Bity Al Shamsi is a self-taught artist who works in collage, digital media, and photography, often mixing digital and more traditional techniques to highlight the effects of consumer cultural and technological shifts on artistic production. In the artist’s words, his artworks ‘are reflections of subconscious and conscious experiences, and my vision lies in interpreting it visually. Al Shamsi has contributed significantly to the UAE’s art scene. In addition to teaching photography courses with the Abu Dhabi Educational Council and workshops at FUNN: Sharjah Media Arts for Youth and Children, Al Shamsi was selected among 21 international artists to participate in the Expo 2020 campaign ‘For Everyone. He was awarded the Salama bint Hamdan Emerging Artists Fellowship, which is organized in partnership with the Rhode Island School of Design.

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Saoud Al Dhaheri

Born in Al-Ain city, United Arab Emirates (UAE) in 1987, Saoud Al Dhaheri [RF1] joined the Higher Colleges of Technology Photography Club, and later the Emirates Photography Society, to pursue his artistic passion.  Working predominantly in photography, digital art, and mixed media, Al Dhaheri’s works show a preoccupation with composition and color that illuminate everyday objects or scenes.  His photographs reflect the culture of the UAE, including its rich Islamic architecture that is captured through his unique perspective. Al Dhaheri has participated in exhibitions at Ghaf Art Gallery, Abu Dhabi, and Mariam Gallery, Dubai. 

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Azza Al Qubaisi

Born in Abu Dhabi, Azza Al Qubaisi studied in London where she received an MA in Cultural and Creative Industries HCT-CERT Abu Dhabi and a BA in Silversmithing, Jewellery Design, and Allied Crafts from London Guildhall.  Often referred to as the Emirates’ First Jewellery Artist, Al Qubaisi produces wearable jewelry pieces and large-scale sculptural works that are influenced by the desert landscape of the United Arab Emirates and its rich ancestral past.  She has contributed significantly to the UAE’s fast-growing cultural scene, founding two governmental projects to support and develop handicrafts and establishing ‘Made In UAE’, a platform to showcase local crafts and design.  More recently, she established ‘ART Junction’, an initiative in collaboration with HCT Fujariah that seeks to support emerging creative Emirati talent by using materials from Fujairah.  Her work won her the British Council 2011 YCE Award, and she has been exhibited internationally in Finland, Qatar, Bahrain, Morocco, Cairo, Brussels, and London.

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Ayesha Hadhir

Ayesha Hadhir is an emerging Emirati visual artist working predominantly in textile, creating textured pieces – either embroidered materials mounted on screens or stand-alone larger-scale sculptural pieces –centralizing the materials she uses, namely brightly colored threads that are often left hanging and unstitched.  Whilst her subject matter reflects her personal interests and vignettes from her family history, Hadhir’s work is most notable for her unique aesthetic practice that invites viewers to carefully consider the process involved in the making of the works.  Studying visual art at the College of Arts and Creative Enterprises at Zayed University, the artist’s young career has seen her exhibit in her native UAE – namely, the Citizen E Gallery in Dubai ­­and at the Sharjah Art Foundation. 

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Fatima Al Mazrouie

Born in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates (UAE), Fatima Al Mazrouie received a degree in Visual Arts and Design from Zayed University, UAE.  Her work seeks to interrogate and notions of womanhood, specifically what it means to be a Muslim woman in the Arab region. Islamic calligraphy features heavily in her mixed-media canvases upon which she applies images or found objects that have come to signify representations of women in the region.  More recently her mixed-media collages have focused on broader socio-cultural history of the UAE.  Al Mazrouie’s artist career began when she participated in a group exhibition at Salwa Zeidan Gallery in 2009 and four years later, she was the gallery’s featured ‘Signature Artist’ (2013) at Abu Dhabi Art.  Her work has been auctioned in 2010 at Sotheby’s in Doha, Qatar, and acquired by public and private collectors including The Zayed National Museum.  In 2013, she was chosen to represent the UAE-Germany Art Exchange Programme hosted by Damen and the Lepsien Art Foundation’s residency program. The artist has exhibited widely internationally and in her native UAE.

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Hussain Sharif

Hussain Sharif is one of the Emirates’ foremost conceptual artists, who has contributed widely to the development of art in his native United Arab Emirates (UAE), founding the Emirates Fine Art Society in Sharjah along with his brother, Hassan Sharif, Mohammed Kazem, Mohammed Ahmed Ibrahim and Abdullah Al Saadi. His body of work, which includes painting, drawing, collage and installation, is conceptual and experimental in approach. Central to his work is an engagement with Emirati identity, with Sharif using collected materials found in the streets, to speak to the socio-political and economic shifts his region has witnessed since the mid-seventies. In the artist’s words: ‘I believe that artists should not simply search for old materials used many years before…The streets of our cities are really crowded with materials and the sanctity of any kind of individual material is lost. I like to recycle my art’. Born in Dubai in 1961, Sharif received a degree in Theatre Design from the High Institute of Kuwait, after which he worked as the head designer at Sharjah TV. He has exhibited widely in the UAE, Egypt, Russia, Holland, France and Germany.

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Al Anood Al Obeidli

Al Anood Al Obeidli, born in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emitates. He works primarily in collage producing works that are almost sculptural in form.

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