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20 July 2024

Government and Private Sector Unite with Festival X to Empower the Media Arts Community in UAE

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By E247

Government and Private Sector Unite with Festival X to Empower the Media Arts Community in UAE

The partnering collaborators, Ars Electronica, Alserkal Initiatives, Dubai Festivals and Retail Establishment (DFRE), part of Department of Economy and Tourism (DET), Dubai Future Foundation (DFF), and PwC Middle East are coming together to reaffirm their common objective of empowering the new media arts scene in the UAE, and positioning Dubai as a regional hub for media arts and innovation.

Joining forces, these future-thinking entities aim to achieve their goal by facilitating local and regional artists with the right tools and resources as a way to nurture the developing community.

An MOU signing ceremony was held on September 13, 2023 in the presence of Amin Davaei, Co-founder and Director of Festival X, Abdulaziz AlJaziri, Deputy CEO of DFF, Vilma Jurkute, Executive Director for Alserkal Initiatives, Suhaila  Ghubash, Executive Director - Festivals and Events at Dubai Festivals and Retail Establishment, and Ali Hosseini, Chief Digital Officer at PwC Middle East, Poorya Montaseri, Co-Founder of Festival X, as well as the virtual presence of Martin Honzik, CCO of Ars Electronica Linz and Managing Director of Ars Electronica Festival.

As Festival X takes on the crucial role that it plays for the future of innovation and the creative community in the UAE, they are fully committed to ensuring that they are bringing onboard the right partners to guide through this long, yet promising journey. Hence, forming a strategic partnership with Ars Electronica, an international pioneer in the field of arts, science, and technology, with over 40 years of experience has been an essential part in the inception of Festival X.

“Festival X and Ars Electronica explore media art's definition in the UAE, merging local and international perspectives,” states Martin Honzik, the CCO of Ars Electronica Linz and Managing Director of Ars Electronica Festival “Discover global themes and their treatment in the Arab region. Explore artists' individual engagement and unique expressions influenced by local culture. This collaboration establishes a new art form and career opportunities for local artists, showcased at Festival X and Ars Electronica. Delve into sustainability, technology, society, and innovation through a culturally infused lens.”

Such a determinative role as the one that Festival X has committed to, relies heavily on visionaries and believers of their underlying objectives and what could be achieved when the artistic community is truly nurtured and facilitated accordingly.

Vilma Jurkute, Executive Director for Alserkal Initiatives, one of the first to believe in Festival X’s mission and join as the first cultural and strategic partner when conversations first started in the spring of 2022, states: “Looking ahead, we are convinced of the potential to extend this partnership beyond our physical site of Alserkal Avenue through reinforced creative networking and programming. We are eager to support our partner in ways that build on the cultural/creative expertise we have shared so far. Lastly, we see enormous potential to continue our joint investment in new practitioners, helping to showcase their work across our ever-evolving professional and institutional networks.”

Abdulaziz AlJaziri, Deputy CEO of DFF, a government entity set to anticipate, design, and drive Dubai's future as well as foster a culture that embraces foresight and innovation as a way of work and life, commented: "Dubai is increasingly gaining international recognition as a hub for technology, and high-profile events such as Festival X amplify this reputation. Our collaboration with Festival X serves as a live example of our dedication to fostering and supporting the local innovation landscape and we take pride in this partnership reflecting the rich cultural diversity present in Dubai and the UAE.”

Ahmed Al Khaja, CEO of Dubai Festivals and Retail Establishment (DFRE), a strategic partner, states: “We are thrilled to embark on this exciting partnership with Festival X to both elevate Dubai's position as a global leader in innovation and creativity and establish Festival X as one of the city’s leading events; further reinforcing its position as an international events destination. Festival X represents the intersection of arts, science, and technology, aligning seamlessly with the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of UAE and Ruler of Dubai to further grow the city’s creative offering by driving forward efforts to attract a new generation of global talents and innovators, bringing Dubai closer to its goal of becoming the best city in the world to visit, live and work.”

"We’re excited about Festival X's mission to explore the synergy between art and technology,”
Ali Hosseini, Chief Digital Officer at PwC Middle East expresses, “Through our partnership, PwC aims to bring this unique combination to our region and clients, aligning with our commitment to innovation and design. The future for creative technologists holds immense potential, and Festival X serves as a platform to attract and promote new ideas and the generation of talent."

“We're on a mission, a mission to bring together and hopefully, play a part in molding the next generation of thinkers, creators, and innovators. A mission, I'm happy to declare we're in it together,” says Amin Davaei, the Co-founder, and Director of Festival X. “Festival X is due to take place on October 6th, 2023, in Alserkal Avenue, and I would like to invite everyone from any age, any background, and academic fields, to join us! Because Festival X is more than simply an event; it's a testament to progress.”

Festival X, powered by LINKVIVA, is a firm believer of the future that can be shaped through fostering and developing a community that is inclusive of the subjectivity that arts have to offer, objectivity of scientific approaches, and utilization of technological advancements, and with the support of our partners, our common goal is to promote a local artistic community through future-oriented art forms.

For more information visit https://festivalx.ae/2023/next-gen/