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28 February, 2024

Artistic masterpieces adorn Al Shindagha houses in Sikka Art & Design Festival

The 12th Sikka Art & Design Festival, held under the patronage of Her Highness Sheikha Latifa bint Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Chairperson of Dubai Culture and Arts Authority (Dubai Culture) and Member of the Dubai Council, brings together over 500 creatives from the local, regional, and international scene at Al Shindagha Historic Neighbourhood. A flagship Dubai Culture initiative, the festival supports the emirate's cultural sector, fosters an environment where artists can thrive, and contributes to Dubai's reputation as a global centre for culture, an incubator for creativity, and a thriving hub for talent.
The festival, which continues until 3 March 2024, features houses filled with masterpieces of art and colour. The Digital Khaleeji House includes a variety of digital works bearing the imprints of artists from the GCC, including Kuwaiti artist Dana Al Rashid, who displays three digital prints on canvas: ‘Digitising Life’, ‘The Wise One and The Plague’, and ‘Do You Eat Alone?’, while Bahraini Ahmed Al Kuwaiti presents ‘Halwa’, in which he turns a memory into a metaphorical dream. Emirati Mohamed Al Mansoori’s series of digital art titled ‘Solitude’ captures the essence of introspection and quiet contemplation.
Within the walls of the Khaleeji House, Saudi artist Afnan Albladi displays an abstract installation titled ‘Lifelines’ that highlights the different paths taken by Arab women to express their strength, while Emirati Artist Fatima Alketbi and Ayesha F from Pakistan, through their work ‘Mahabah’, seek to explore cultural communication. The Urban House by The Workshop DXB brings together many artistic masterpieces, including The Loom of Light installation by Russian artist Dina Saadi, through which she calls for opening doors and extending hands to those seeking community support. Meanwhile, Yemeni artist May Ali, through her work Happy 2.0, continues her journey of exploring light and its interaction with natural elements.
House 436 brings together a group of innovative works under its roof. In it, Emirati artist Alyazia Ahmed Alfalasi displays her artwork ‘Unnoticeable’, in which she discusses the issue of the integration of Bedouin societies with their urban counterparts through her use of fishing net materials, printed fabrics, weaving, and felt cloth, while ‘Scripted Scribbles — Tracking Doodles’ by Emirati artist Ayesha Bin Haider reflects the transformation of illustrations into historical manuscript format, transitioning from a designer to historian in the process. In the same vein, Korean graphic designer Soyoung Park presented her work ‘Memory Excavation Kit —Tracking Doodles’, through which she reveals forgotten memories through childhood drawings that she collected and presents as historical discoveries.
Under the roof of House 314, Emirati artist Ameera Bu Kadra displays ‘Literary Reflections’, a unique initiative that aims to merge the art of photography with literature, while American Kirsten Sands Decker presents her work ‘Traceless’, which explores the idea of carbonless travel, personal memories, a sense of home, and shared histories.
‘Archiving The Now’ House displays a series of photographs focusing on the cultural and daily life in the country. The house also offers many interactive sessions and workshops aimed at motivating the younger generation to learn from senior citizens ‘Kebarona’ and benefit from their life experiences.
House 207 includes eco-friendly wall art inspired by the UAE desert created by Emirati artist Batool Alblooshi. Through her painting ‘Patience’, Emirati artist Aziza Mohammed Alhammadi expresses her own point of view on the concept of patience. Through his installation ‘Silhouettes of Shadows’, Algerian artist Boubaker Boukhari uses jewellery to weave visual narratives, creating interplays of shadow and light reminiscent of contrasts in Islamic miniatures through varied materials and techniques, while British Jessica Mai Locke's piece, ‘Floral Wall Art’, was inspired by the magic of colours.
House 206 includes many unique pieces, including ‘Eternal Gateways’ by Abdulla Alneyadi, while artist Jassim Al Awadhi presents two works, the first is titled ‘Shadow of the Past’, characterised by its local and oriental character, and the second is ‘Garden of Hypocrisy’, in which different materials and colours are used. Iraqi Rawan Mohi displays her ‘Soap’, while Egyptian Samia Saleh comes with her piece ‘The Game’, and Syrian Sara Kamar showcases the work ‘ONE’.
The Emirates Fine Arts Society House displays works of art bearing the fingerprints of 14 artists, including Dr. Abeer Essa, Khaled Hounaysh, Nidal Khaddour, Shaikha Sara Bint Faisal Al Qassimi, Abeer Al Iedani, Chadini Debak, Al Tyeb Al Haj, and Majida Nasreddin, among others.
TODA House offers visitors to the festival the opportunity to interact with art using their smartphones, presenting a selection of digital artworks by a group of artists including Diaa Allam, Artur Gadzhiev, and Ergun Tan Cayiroglu. House 200 showcases many of the artists' experiences, including Fatima Albudoor, whose ‘Tangled Seas’ explores the idea of a dichotomy between freedom and entanglement, while Hend Mohammed Almurid was inspired by her childhood memories and animation to create her work ‘Hend's Garden’. Shama Alsuwaidi also displays her work 'Cluster,’ a sculptural installation that portrays the feeling of searching for completion and contentment.

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