Sotheby’s Dubai showcases a plethora of important Islamic jewelry and heritage artifacts, 20 rare works from the House of Faberge, and some of the most prominent pieces of art from the Arab world. The works of contemporary UAE based artists are also dotted amongst those pieces.
The modern art pieces are being presented by a homegrown UAE based platform, Engage 101, and are by Augustine Paredes, Mohammed Khalid, Alaa Edris, Nasir Nasrallah and Sara Ahli. Their pieces are in a non-selling exhibition as part of Sotheby’s “Made in the Emirates,” a showcase of jewelry and art crafted in the UAE.
Over the last 10 years, the UAE art scene has evolved exponentially and has seen openings of museums, major international auction houses, art fairs such as Abu Dhabi Art and Art Dubai, and much more.
Engage 101 conceptualized amid the growth of the arts and culture scene in the UAE, was co-founded by curator Munira Al-Sayegh and writer Gaith Abdulla, and is a platform that hopes to promote and elevate works by emerging artists based in the UAE with international and regional collectors, so that the local UAE art scene can continue to evolve.
Speaking to Arab News, Abdulla stated, “Developing this exhibition with Sotheby’s as our first non-selling exhibition has allowed us more freedom to think outside of the box about the artworks we’re presenting.” He continued, “We were inspired by the idea of being able to exhibit works previously sold to our collectors and that was the key to how we chose to approach this exhibition. To be able to facilitate the first time a collector loans an artwork for an exhibition feels rewarding. We will be showing artworks collected from our previous sales, as well as newer works by our artist alumni and introducing three new artists we will be collaborating with in our upcoming sale.”
Al Sayegh also stated, “At the core of our platform are three pillars, artists, research and collectors and for our first non-selling exhibition held in collaboration with Sotheby’s Dubai, we have been able to bring all three components to the forefront, and take our collectors through various processes, bringing them to the heart of the exhibition.”
The UAE based platform hosts quarterly art sales that feature non-gallery represented artists, in a rotating mix of spaces, artists, and audiences – with Sotheby’s Dubai’s DIFC headquarters being one. The works presented by Engage 101 will be exhibited alongside highlights from Sotheby’s 20th Century Art/Middle East auction, which opens for bidding online from from 20th – 26th October. The selection includes an abstract painting by Fahrelnissa Zeid, six works by Iranian Modernist Parviz Tanavoli and a bold geometric canvas by Iraqi-British artist Athier Mousawi.