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16 April 2024

Sikka Art & Design Festival: Unleashing Creativity Through Inspiring Talks

By E247

The 12th edition of the Sikka Art and Design Festival, held under the patronage of Her Highness Sheikha Latifa bint Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Chairperson of Dubai Culture and Arts Authority and Member of the Dubai Council, offers visitors a variety of exhibitions and artworks. With over 500 local, regional, and global creatives and artists, the festival aims to provide an innovative platform that brings together various art forms, celebrating established and emerging creatives from the UAE and the GCC, in line with Dubai’s cultural vision to cement the emirate’s position as a global centre for culture, an incubator for creativity, and a thriving hub for talent.

The festival, hosted by Al Shindagha Historic Neighbourhood until 3 March, offering over 20 talks within ‘Sikka Speaks’ and other houses, featured prominent creatives discussing global art trends. Sessions cover topics such as ‘Curating in the UAE’ by Giuseppe Moscatello – Studio thirteen, while Jose Carrillo, the Associate Professor at the American University in Dubai, discussed the topic ‘An Interdisciplinary Exploration of Culinary Landscape through Science and Technology’, and Hani Asfour, Vice President, of Innovation and Institutional Partnerships at Dubai Institute of Design and Innovation (DIDI), addressed the impact of artificial intelligence tools on the field of design during the session ‘I See Design in Your Future: AI is the Age of Design’.

During her session, the visual artist Ahlam Albannai, Division Chair of Applied Media at the Higher Colleges Technology in Dubai, focused on the power of imagery and photography in cultural representation.

Dubai Women Establishment participated in a talk with Amna Bulhoul titled ‘Unleashing her Creativity,’ moderated by Diala Ali, while the session ‘Mind Matters: Artist Well-Being in Entrepreneurship’ moderated by Clare Napper and featured Dina Saadi, Rami Afifi, and Megadon Betamax. Jassim Al Awadhi, an expert in the recording and commercial licensing sector at the Department of Economy and Tourism in Dubai, guided his session to assist entrepreneurs and artists in application processes.

In addition to Sikka Speaks, Christopher Benton, Jumairy, and Maxime Cramatte will shed light on the details of the non-traditional art scene in the UAE. Ahmad Makary, Cyril Reaidiy, and Tamila Kochkarova will discuss building a purposeful creative community in their session.

Sikka Art and Design Festival also presents a diverse lineup of musical performances and entertainment activities involving over 70 musicians, including Bulgarian guitarist ⁠Nuriya, artist Nour Al Aridi, singer Ingrid Naccour, and violinist Snezana Ivkovic. Visitors will also enjoy performances by the Hassanin ensemble, classical musician Kamal Mussalam's fusion music, and performances by artists Hazza, Mehdi Bahmed, Emirati singer and composer ⁠Qusai al Mimari, and qanun player ⁠Khaled bin Khadem, among others.