Dubai Culture launches ‘Photographs in Dialogue UAE – 1971 – UK’ exhibition at Etihad Museum
• Photographs in Dialogue UAE – 1971 – UK is an exhibition organised by Etihad Museum and the National Portrait Gallery, London
• It traces the diplomatic relationship between the United Kingdom and the United Arab Emirates in the lead up to the moment of the UAE’s Union in 1971
• The exhibition includes photographs of prominent participants and decisive events borrowed from collections in the UAE and formal portraits lent by the National Portrait Gallery in London.
Dubai – UAE, 6 Sep 2020: Dubai Culture and Arts Authority, in collaboration with the National Portrait Gallery, London, and with support from the British Council, announces the opening of ”Photographs in Dialogue” exhibition at Etihad Museum from the 9th of September 2020 till the 25th of March 2021 to highlight key photographic collections that portrait significant historical moments throughout the history of the United Arab Emirates.
The exhibition will trace the diplomatic relationship between the United Kingdom and the United Arab Emirates in the 1960s and 70s leading up to the UAE’s Union in 1971.
Photographs in Dialogue will include a collection of photographs lent from the collections of the National Portrait Gallery, London as well as photographic collections from the UAE archives . These include a photograph of Queen Elizabeth II, taken by Cecil Beaton in 1968; a rare series of photographs of Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum (then Ruler of Dubai), taken by Rex Coleman for Baron Studios in London 1961; as well as collections that illustrate key moments leading up to the formation of the UAE
The exhibition highlights the importance of the historical relations between the UAE and the United Kingdom and recounts historical stories of prominent leaders in both countries who worked together to develop plans to end the official presence of the United Kingdom in the region, while also shedding light on the beginning of a bright era for the United Arab Emirates. Among the most prominent photos are of two British political residents in the Gulf, Bernard Burrows, who opposed any change in the relationship between Britain and what was known as the Trucial States, and Geoffrey Arthur, who oversaw the withdrawal of the British presence and the signing of a treaty that declared that relations between the two countries “will be governed by a spirit of friendship.”
Photographs in Dialogue will also show visitors how photos were developed before the digital age and how these photos conserved history and documented the most prominent moments and historical events . The exhibition will also focus on the works of some of the most recognized photographers of the 20th century, such as Cecil Beaton; Yusef Karsh, winner of the Golden Plate of the Academy of Achievements (1960); and Eve Arnold.
This collaboration falls within the framework of the Authority’s vision of strengthening Dubai’s position as a global centre for culture by establishing international collaborations that draw upon Dubai’s rich cultural assets and contribute to placing it on the global cultural map
The initiative also reflects the Authority’s commitment to the importance of such exhibitions and their role in enriching the public’s cultural knowledge, enhancing the awareness of generations about the political history of the Nation , and deepening their sense of belonging, while also consolidating the value of exploring history and its importance on the journey towards the future.