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AD’s Art of Living 2024 Brings 50 Middle Eastern Artists Together in Abu Dhabi’s Magical Mangroves

Collage : Artem Levashov, using artwork courtesy of the artists and galleries participating in AD’s Art of living 2024

Open to the public on 3rd & 4th February 2024 in Jubail Island, this dynamic art show celebrates hope and our interconnectedness.

By AD Staff

AD‘s acclaimed exhibition, Art of Living returns to Jubail Island in Abu Dhabi, to present an unprecedented art show featuring immersive installations, sculpture, large-scale artwork and never-seen-before work by some of the biggest contemporary artists in the Middle East.


Art of Living is open to the public between 4pm and 9pm, on 3rd & 4th February 2024

The 2024 edition of Art of Life will spotlight the UAE’s thriving arts scene that’s giving a platform to artists from all around the world. Work by Rana Begum, Sahand Hesamiyan, Saloua Raouda Choukair, Alfred Basbous, Aïda Muluneh, Tarek Elkassouf, Juma Al Haj and others – across diverse media, scales and themes – will together pay homage to the act of ‘creating’ that unites all people and fosters hope.

Nasser Almulhim, Land and Sea (2023). Jimmy de Paris; courtesy of the artist and Tabari Artspace

Galleries Featured in AD’s Art of Living 2024

This list is presented in no particular order. Please click on the name to jump to the full profile.

For the 2024 edition of its proprietary activation, Art of Living, Architectural Digest Middle East has appointed Mariana Wehbe Public Relations as creative consultant.
Yaw Owusu, Tranquility (2022). Courtesy of the artist and Efie Gallery

Art of Living is open to the public between 4pm and 9pm, on 3rd & 4th February 2024

AlaaSharabi, Mixed media on canvas (2023). Courtesy of the artist and Saleh Barakat Gallery

Ayyam Gallery

Photo courtesy of Ayyam Gallery from a previous exhibition

Founded in 2006, Ayyam Gallery is a leading arts organisation that manages the careers of diverse established and emerging artists. Blue-chip art space in Dubai, a series of collaborative projects in the United States, Europe, and Asia, and a multinational non-profit arts programme have furthered the gallery’s mandate of expanding the parameters of international art. With its widely respected multilingual publishing division and a custodianship programme that manages the estates of pioneering artists, Ayyam Gallery has also contributed to recent efforts that document underrepresented facets of global art history. @ayyamgallery

Efie Gallery

Aïda Muluneh, Knowing the way to Tomorrow (2018). Courtesy of the artist and Efie Gallery

Efie Gallery is a contemporary art gallery in Dubai specialising in the representation and advancement of artists of African origin, both from the African continent and its global diaspora. Since its inception in 2021, and the opening of its permanent space in 2022 in Al Khayat Art Avenue, the gallery has been establishing itself as a global platform for some of Africa’s most significant artists, working with the likes of El Anatsui, Aïda Muluneh, Maggie Otieno, Isshaq Ismail and Yaw Owusu. @efiegallery

Firetti Contemporary

Jason Middlebrook, Making my Own Grain (2016). Courtesy of the artist and Firetti Contemporary

By representing both established and emerging artists from all over the world, Firetti Contemporary strives to build a multidisciplinary art space with a strong identity to an international platform. Bringing together like-minded individuals and pioneers of the artistic and expressive future, the gallery assembles a dynamic curation of works that encourage the importance of individuality as well as establishing collective alignment. @firetti.contemporary

Iris Projects

Photo courtesy of Iris Projects from a previous exhibition
Iris Projects, formerly known as Iris Art Advisory, is a contemporary art gallery and a strategic cultural hub founded in 2020 by Lateefa Bin Hamoodah and Maryam Al Falasi. Purposefully artist-led, Iris Projects nurtures discourses, inspires creativity, and promotes a deeper comprehension of the world through the lens of contemporary art. Its commitment is twofold: to promote the creative ambitions of painters, sculptors, photographers, and multidisciplinary artists of the UAE and to preserve the artistic legacy and heritage of the region. The mission extends to fostering a cross-disciplinary ecosystem, drawing diverse audiences, enabling dialogues across various domains, and enriching the arts and culture landscape of Abu Dhabi and the UAE. @irisprojects

Artbooth UAE

Gilbert Halaby, Will you wait for me under that pine tree, Rome (2022). Courtesy of the artist and Artbooth UAE
With a background in Art History, Art Management and Evaluation, Roger El-Khoury founded Artbooth in 2019 as a Artbooth UAE as a hybrid between an art gallery and a mobile booth you will find at the most prestigious art fairs. Imagined as a cross-cultural bridge between renowned artists, audiences, and collectors from across the world, it presents work across all media including painting, drawing, sculpture, installation, photography, and video. Artbooth UAE is located in the heart of Abu Dhabi, in the ADNEC area. @artboothuae


Photo courtesy of Kameh

“I’m making my pieces 100% locally in Dubai and I proudly tell people that we are a UAE-born and produced brand,” says the anonymous AD100 talent behind the collectable design atelier Kameh. Imperfectly perfect, a raw, hand-sculpted look transforms functional objects into works of art. Remaining behind the scenes, the designer wants their work to be judged on its own merit, and if recent outings – including a collaboration with Level Shoes in Dubai Mall and a showcase at Art Basel in Paris – are any indication, they are onto a winning formula. @kameh.space

Nour Hage

Portrait courtesy of Nour Hage
Nour Hage is an award-winning British-Lebanese artist and designer, working across textile and digital. Her practice is centred on the exploration of West Asian identities, culture, history & storytelling with a particular focus on the role of women, the supernatural and mental wellbeing. She was the inaugural Jameel Fellow at the V&A Museum in 2021-22 and was awarded the Boghossian Foundation Prize in 2014. She graduated from Parsons School of Design (Paris) with a BFA in Fashion Design. She is based between London and Dubai. @nourhage_

Collective Y

Photo courtesy of Collective Y
Collective Y by Rhea Younes invites viewers into a world that inspires, where energy flows boundlessly. The brand, composed of bespoke luxury furniture pieces and home accessories, offers a sense of timelessness, evoking an array of emotions from every point of discovery. Paying homage to artisanal production techniques and couture-inspired upholstery, the brand captures an era of luxury, where elegance and simplicity converge. Collective Y ultimately draws inspiration from classical Parisian homes, the eclecticism of Beirut and the many colours found in nature. @collective_y_

UrArtU Gallery

Photo courtesy of UrArtU Gallery from a previous project

Gurgen Yeritsyan, one of the region’s foremost conceptual floral artists is charting new territory with his recently minted multi-disciplinary studio, UrArtU. Not satisfied with creating larger than life floral installations for the world’s biggest brands, he is now flexing his creative muscle combining his mastery of flowers (of course), with space, fashion and product design to envison rare and immersive experiences. @urartu_gallery

Aisha Alabbar Gallery

Photo courtesy of Aisha Alabbar Gallery from a previous exhibition

Founded in 2018 in Al Quoz, Aisha Alabbar Gallery is one of the first Emirati-led galleries in Dubai focused on contemporary and modern art by Emirati, local, and regional artists. The gallery seeks to further the practices of emerging and established artists, who are the inspiration for the gallery’s diverse range of programming. Dedicated to UAE-based artists and producing five innovative exhibitions per year, Aisha Alabbar Gallery has built a reputation for rigorous exhibition presentations and for collaborations with renowned curators and organisations, investing considerable resources in bringing the practices of artists in the UAE to the contemporary stage. @aisha_alabbar_gallery

Tabari Artspace

Photo courtesy of Tabari Artspace from a previous exhibition

Established in 2003 by Maliha Tabari, this Dubai-based gallery has a twofold manifesto: Preserving histories of craft emerging from the MENA region, while elevating young artists in the Gulf on a global stage. Moving fluidly between a platform for exhibition-making and artist mentorship, Tabari Artspace has taken an in-depth focus on GCC-specific, female-centered narratives, increasingly working with Kuwaiti, Emirati and Saudi artists to offer them a platform that places them and their work in a broader historical context. @tabari_artspace


The Third Line

Anachar Basbou, Untitled sculpture in Corten Steel (2023). Photo courtesy of the artist and the Saleh Barakat Gallery

Since 2005, The Third Line, Dubai-based gallery that represents contemporary artists locally, regionally, and internationally has been reframing the cultural narrative. Over the past 19 years, it has become a pioneering platform for established talent and emerging voices from the region and its diaspora, building a dynamic program that explores the diversity of practices in the region. In addition to its exhibitions, The Third Line engages in the production of art publications in English and Arabic and hosts numerous non-profit, alternative programs that add to the discourse on art, film, music, and literature in the region. @thethirdlinedxb

Saleh Barakat Gallery

A view inside the Saleh Barakat Gallery in Lebanon. Photo courtesy of the Saleh Barakat Gallery

After a quarter century of pioneering work in modern and contemporary Arab art, with Agial Art Gallery playing a central role in putting Beirut back on the map of Arab art, the Saleh Barakat Gallery opened in May 2016, in one of Beirut’s emblematic historical cultural locations: The former Cinema Clemenceau – later Masrah Al-Madina, that is now transformed into a truly modern art gallery at par with some of the best in the world. A manifestation of the founder, Saleh Barakat’s passion for the arts and for supporting artistic talent hailing from Lebanon, the gallery is home to some of the most important names in the Lebanese art scene. @salehbarakatgallery

Anachar Basbous, Untitled sculpture in Corten Steel (2023). Photo courtesy of the artist and the Saleh Barakat Gallery

Gallery Isabelle

Photo courtesy of Gallery Isabelle from a previous exhibition

One of the pioneers who shaped the UAE’s early commercial art scene, Isabelle van den Eynde opened her first gallery, B21, in 2006 in Dubai’s Al Quoz industrial district. At a time when contemporary art galleries were just beginning to stake their place in the local cultural landscape, she exhibited challenging artists whose names still figure on her roster today – such as the late Hassan Sharif, considered a trailblazer of contemporary art in the UAE, and Mohammed Kazem. In 2010, she founded her eponymous space in Alserkal Avenue. @gallery.isabelle


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