Wednesday, 18 March 2015

ARTiculating Fun

It is perhaps the busiest month for art industry in the region. By region I mean sub urban Dubai and its nearby emirates, not entirely the whole of Middle East as they like to say. But then it is ok to say Middle East... perhaps no other city in the ME ever hosts so many art events in one single season. [Applause!]

Correct me if am wrong... this month there are some 100+ events in small and big venues around the city. And if that is another fat Dubai record... you shouldn't be surprised. [The new surprise! surprise! is when something in Dubai doesn't touch a record! ;)]

DIFC Art Night that opened on March 16 7pm

These events include new shows by art galleries at Al Serkal [the arty place with street graffiti painted on containers... somewhere behind Mall of the Emirates] and DIFC [the same place that has ZUMA... that expensive restaurant, not the zumba dance class dear Dubaian!]. The UAE art scene this season saw/will see new stories - many solos, group events, charity art shows, an all new 3d event, something important at Tashkeel, then the unmissable next door Sharjah biennale [but its there for 3 months right?... thank god thats a lot of time hope you can visit it], OMG the most-anticipated Art Dubai at Madinat Jumeirah [that offers spectacular backgrounds to selfies] and a host of open calls for near-future art events. 

The most popular among the recent open calls is the Big Picture in its 3rd edition... like everything in Dubai... BP [incidentally does not stand for blood pressure] has also become bigger than its previous editions spilling into two different galleries this time. If you are an artist living in the UAE you have to apply as it is the safest and most important ways to make your foothold in the region as an artist. By region here I don't mean Dubai alone! [You should know this by now.]

Did you miss reading about my solo in Abu Dhabi? It was in a recent post in my other blog that is more personal. [Even more, I mean]. Here is the link

Along with new roads to learning art and its people... have stumbled upon how to stay calm while on this path of ARTiculation:

1. Your fine art degree/university/brand-associations/art lobby/googling abilities do not decide how great an artist you are. Only your truth and original output will.

2. We can forgive and forget people who may seem to block our progress. But things may unforgivingly remain the same when you remain unforgiving to yourself... by annexing your peace to various distractions... that ruin precious time... which deserve to be devoted to creative endeavours otherwise.

3. All the art news papers in the world cannot fill in the knowledge void. Finding yourself can be as spectacular as the movie 'Finding Nemo' is for a 5 year old who watches it for the first time. Do not confuse knowledge for wisdom. The latter is most often sleeping inside you while the former will keep you robbed of hours that can be spent in finding greater wisdom. Knowledge is important but will not save you. Wisdom will.

4. Art is never business. Those who put a price are often those who will weigh your heart and liver by the kilo and sell it off to a wholesaler who doesn't care if the buyer prefers grilling your soul or freezing it for a later occasion/opportunity.

5. Those who do business with art are merely there for the torture of it. Bless them whenever you can... often dressed in black overalls/pursed lips/fully enveloped in an am-not-approachable-air... at openings wanting to make valuable conversations with vacant spaces/white walls... they need more than your blessings... but you may stick to just that for now.

6. If anyone says artists are greedy don't believe them. If possible sue them. Actually most-often they are referring to impersonators who pretend to be artists. The majority of the real ones do not exist in Dubai... most are dead. Some are really dead - as in buried and gone (I mean some of the Masters) and others waiting for their turn (to be Masters hopefully/ideally before death).

7. To term art market as market is blasphemous. It is as offensive as paying a tax or fee to offer your prayers. This truth only an artist will tell you... through their piece of life... when they are articulate enough. Rest of the so-called market are there for fun! Bless them too.

If you just cannot make sense of this blog... the purpose is achieved... bless me... for I have saved you few moments of 'let-me-see-what-I-can-get-out-of-this' reading habit!

Take a Piece of Me at the Henosis stand @ DIFC: Abu Dhabi based contemporary Indian abstract artist and doctor Ashvin displays his satire on the commercial aspects of art here until Thursday (tomorrow). This installation allows the buyer to choose his favourite portion of the art that the artist will then use a pair of scissors to cut and part with. Originally 5 meters long, this installation is shrinking by the day... thanks to happy shopping!

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