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Astrophotographer Samy Olabi Creates Unique VR Experience To Enjoy From Home

The power of virtual reality technology allows viewers to immerse themselves in the depths of the desert and enables them to explore the night sky through the artistic vision of the artist.

Manarat Al Saadiyat in Abu Dhabi has launched a free virtual reality exhibition in collaboration with Nikon Middle East. Lensed by astrophotographer Samy Olabi and taking place until 30 December, the expo, which is set to bring art closer to photography enthusiasts, showcases the beauty of the desert and night sky. Titled “Celestial: A Journey Through Space and Time,” the stunning images are sure to turn you into an avid stargazer.

The exhibition by the UAE-based Olabi, a multi-award-winning photographer whose body of work is regarded as one of the best in the region, highlights his creative process and showcases his technical prowess. Additionally, the astrophotographer’s approach to photography helps one understand more about the mysteries of the universe.

“Astronomy, arts and adventure were always a passion of mine since I was a child. I used to go camping with my friends when we were teens and we used to lay down, stargaze and dream of travelling through space among galaxies and stars,” the artist said. “When I grew up and took Construction Management as a source of living, my passion for art and adventure eventually led me to pursue photography.”

Olabi, who has had links with CNN, National Geographic, Microsoft, Apple and more, also said photography makes it possible to “freeze a great moment of time, or share a breath-taking scene with the world.” He added images can get deep meanings across by allowing ideas and concepts to be expressed in a silent and dramatic way. “Photography is a visual language that is widely understood and it represents a time-out from the hustle and rapid rhythms of life,” he said.

The organisers at Manarat Al Saadiyat, which aims to provide residents and visitors with unique, enriching cultural experiences through its events and workshops, have been working hard to explore new ways to bring artists and audiences together during the pandemic.

Immersive and interactive, the exhibition by Olabi demonstrates “the impressive nature of state-of-the-art astrophotography, showing how much we can discover of the deep sky,” according to Narendra Menon, Managing Director of Nikon Middle East FZE.
The exhibition is available to view via:

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