The United Arab Emirates is known as a place of international business and becoming better known as a location to find great artists at work. Although people around the world come here to take part in this epicenter of commerce; local cultural ways and customs are prevalent among the people who were born and raised here. Several contemporary artists from the UAE have gained world-wide attention.
One artist known as Hassan Sharif has broken through these expectations and changed the way people think about artistic themes so they can appreciate his mind-set. His current style recycles old shoes, papers, and other objects into beautifully sculptured pieces that challenge the mind into recognizing the time and imagination it takes into forming the bizarre work. His artwork has been shown at Alexander Gray Associates, a prestigious New York art gallery.
Other museums such as the Guggenheim, Centre Pompidou in Paris, M+ and Mathaf in Hong Kong, and the Arab Museum of Modern Art in Doha, Qatar have collections of Arab art that feature Sharif. He serves as a role model for current and future generations of Emirati citizens.
Another well-known UAE artist is a contemporary of Sharif and his name is Abdullah Al Saadi. Al Saadi uses nature to inspire his work. He loves to travel by foot. He uses items found along the way to artistically journal his visions. He lives in Khor Fakkan, Sharjah. His work was included in a group show at “Here and Elsewhere” at the New Museum. Al Saadi has worked with Sharif and other supporters to promote Emirati based art associations.
Another artist from the UAE who is gaining notoriety is Ebtisam Abdulaziz. Her work draws from her background in mathematics. She also knows Shariff and has studied from him. Her work can be found at the Deutsche Bank, the Sharjah Art Foundation, and most likely in the palaces of the Emirati royalty who are known to own some of her pieces.
The United Arab Emirates have made their mark on the already exciting art world. Artists from this part of the world are inspiring their own people and those around the globe who appreciate visually enticing creativity coupled with hard work.