Artists-In-Residence (A.i.R) Dubai 2016: Open Call for UAE-based Artists

  • air dubai open call
Art Dubai, Dubai Culture & Arts Authority, Delfina Foundation and Tashkeel are collaborating for the fifth year to run the artists-in-residency programme A.i.R Dubai.

UAE-based artists are invited to apply for a place on this exciting programme working collaboratively with six artists and with the residency's international curator and locally based assistant curator.

The four successful applicants, joined by two international artists, will have the opportunity to work closely with an international curator and to produce a major new work for ‪Art Dubai Projects, the not-for-profit programme of commissions and site-specific works produced for the fair each year. The artists are provided with studio space at Tashkeel January-March 2016, plus access to a programme of mentorship, workshops, readings, talks and outreach events.

A.i.R Dubai also features an opportunity for an upcoming Emirati curator to apply for a curatorial position, working alongside the international curator and helping to curate and produce the artists' works, the residency, public programmes and associated publications. The Assistant Curator position is supported for the second year by Dubai Culture & Arts Authority.

Khalil Abdulwahid, Manager of Visual Arts at the Dubai Culture & Arts Authority, said: "The annual Artist-in-Residence programme has set new benchmarks in driving intercultural artistic exchange, one of the priorities of Dubai Culture.

Having extended our collaboration and support to the initiative since its inception, we are taking it to the next level through a structured and updated programme that enables the participants to experience Dubai's artistic diversity fully, interact with the artist community, access materials effortlessly and derive inspiration from the city's cultural identity."

Algiers- and London-based curator and writer Yasmina Reggad has been selected to lead the commissions and residency programmes for Art Dubai 2016. Yasmina previously participated in Art Dubai as a curatorial Forum Fellow (2014), and is currently programme curator at aria (artist residency in Algiers). Recent London projects include exhibitions at Delfina Foundation and The Mosaic Rooms, and 'We Can't Be There: Emergency Provisions for (un)Anticipated Futures', at the Institute of Contemporary Arts and Tate Modern, in partnership with Goldsmiths, University of London.

Art Dubai Projects supports artists' practices, and encourages audiences to embrace the quizzical and participatory nature of the fair. In her role at Art Dubai, Yasmina will contribute to the selection of artists A.i.R Dubai and Art Dubai projects and commissions programmes, and will work closely with the artists to develop and produce their site-specific works.

Each year the participating curators and partners collaborate to develop an outreach and collateral programme around A.i.R Dubai. The programme includes unique opportunities for the public to interact with artists such as open studios, artists' talks, practical workshops, city and desert walks, curated exhibitions and special artists' books. 

Antonia Carver, Art Dubai Fair Director, said: "The annual A.i.R Dubai programme is central to the residency partners' mission of nurturing emerging artistic and curatorial talent in UAE. The residency provides a unique collaborative work environment and a platform that offers reach to the international art scene."

Applications are open until August 21, 2015. For more information about the programme and to apply please visit artdubai.ae/air-dubai/2016.

Notes to the Editor:

Art Dubai is held under the Patronage of HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai. Art Dubai is held in partnership with The Abraaj Group and is sponsored by Emaar and Julius Baer. Madinat Jumeirah is home to the event. Mashreq Private Banking is the exclusive partner of Art Dubai Modern. The Dubai Culture and Arts Authority is a strategic partner of Art Dubai, and supports the fair's year-round education programme.

In 2015 the gallery halls included 92 galleries from 40 countries, presented through three programmes - Contemporary, Modern and Marker. Art Dubai's extensive not-for-profit programme includes Art Dubai Projects; an exhibition of works by winners of the annual The Abraaj Group Art Prize; a range of educational programmes including The Sheikha Manal Little Artists Program and the community school Campus Art Dubai; and the critically-acclaimed Global Art Forum.

The tenth edition of Art Dubai takes place March 16-19, 2016.


Dubai Culture & Arts Authority (Dubai Culture) was launched on March 8, 2008 by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Vice President & Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai. Dubai Culture plays a critical part in achieving the goals of Dubai Plan 2021 to establish Dubai as a city of happy, creative and empowered people.  

Dubai Culture has announced several initiatives that strengthen the historic and modern cultural fabric of Dubai. These include: Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Patrons of the Arts Awards: A first of-its-kind regional initiative to honour patrons of the arts from around the world for their valuable support in encouraging and strengthening the cultural scene of the Emirate; SIKKA Art Fair: An annual art fair aimed at promoting Emirati and local artists in the UAE; and Dubai Festival for Youth Theatre: An annual festival that celebrates and fosters the art of theatre in the UAE.


Delfina Foundation is an independent, non-profit foundation dedicated to facilitating artistic exchange and developing creative practice through residencies, partnerships and public programming, with a special focus on international collaborations with the greater Middle East & North Africa (MENA). To date, Delfina Foundation has hosted nearly 150 artists, curators and writers from around the world at its headquarters in London and with partners throughout MENA.


Established in 2008 by Lateefa bint Maktoum, Tashkeel is a contemporary art organisation based in Dubai committed to facilitating art and design practice, creative experimentation and cross-cultural dialogue. Placing the artist at the core, Tashkeel supports the UAE's creative community through studio facilities, artists' residencies, international fellowships, a programme of exhibitions, events and professional as well as recreational workshops. Tashkeel's exhibition space accommodates up to six main projects a year, as well as a series of small-scale events. The programme includes solo and thematic exhibitions, screenings, workshops and seminars, fulfilling Tashkeel's commitment to bringing art and culture to a wider audience and engaging the local community.


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