Dubai Canvas Festival opens today

Mona Al Marri, Director General of the Government of Dubai Media Office

The Dubai Canvas Festival, a global art festival that features some of the world’s most renowned street artists, is all set to open on Tuesday, 1 March at the Jumeirah Beach Residence (JBR). Organisers are putting the finishing touches on the Festival, which will see the public spaces of JBR being transformed into a showcase for the creations of over 30 artists from across the world.

Arif Mubarak, Chief Executive Officer of Dubai Properties’ Asset Management Arm under Dubai Properties Group

Organised by Brand Dubai, the creative arm of the Government of Dubai Media Office (GDMO), in partnership with JBR, a renowned destination developed and managed by Dubai Properties (DP), the Dubai Canvas Festival will feature over 60 works of well-known international, regional and local artists. The works of these artists will be exhibited in an area stretching over two kilometres within JBR in a way that encourages active public engagement and interaction.

Ayesha bin Kalli, Member of the Organising Committee of the Dubai Canvas Festival

Director General of the Government of Dubai Media Office Mona Al Marri said: “The Dubai Canvas Festival brings to life the vision of Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum to transform Dubai into an open-air art museum. In many ways, the Festival reflects the character and diversity of Dubai and its growing status as a global cultural hub that provides a supportive environment for artists to display their art and engage with the public. With the support of our strong partnership with JBR, we have expanded the event this year, and we look forward to further building on the success of last year’s Festival.”

This year’s Festival will see an even broader array of artists than last year. Participating artists include the inventor of 3D street art Kurt Wenner; New York-based artist and cyborg activist Neil Harbisson; Dutch pop-surrealist artist Leon Keer; Portuguese street artist Odeith; London-based graffiti artist Fanakapan; Chinese street artist Qi Xinghua; and Brazilian street artist Eduardo Kobra.

Arif Mubarak, Chief Executive Officer of Dubai Properties’ Asset Management Arm under Dubai Properties Group, said, “JBR is leading the region’s unconventional art scene, through bringing major art-focused events to  this internationally touristic renowned destination. Hosting the Dubai Canvas Festival this year is a testament to our efforts in supporting the leadership’s vision to turn Dubai into an outdoor art-gallery, contributing to the overall happiness of the residents and visitors of our destinations, through enriching their lifestyle with innovative events. JBR is steadily gaining the position of a primary artistic platform that encourages local, regional and international artists, to express their passion for art, and showcase their creations.”

Member of the Organising Committee of the Dubai Canvas Festival Ayesha bin Kalli said: “The Dubai public will once again have an incredible opportunity to view and interact with the creations of some of the most celebrated street artists in the world. The works of art displayed at the first Dubai Canvas Festival last year had held audiences spellbound and we are sure that they will have an even more awe-inspiring experience this year.”

The public visiting the Festival will have numerous opportunities to watch master street artists at work. Various events on the Festival’s sidelines will enable the public to interact closely with the artists and gain an understanding of their techniques, use of materials and creative approach. Leading international artists will also conduct workshops aimed at imparting both advanced and basic street art skills to artists and the general public.

One of the unique artists to be featured at the event is Neil Harbisson, the world’s first ‘cyborg artist’. Harbisson, who ‘hears’ the tonal equivalent of colours through an antenna implanted in his skull, will be composing a piece of music based on the colours of Dubai in collaboration with local singers and musicians. This will be the first musical composition Harbisson will be creating based on the colours of a city.

The inventor of 3D street art, Kurt Wenner, who returns to Dubai Canvas Festival this year, will be creating exclusive pieces for the Festival. Wenner invented 3D pavement art in 1984, inspired by the use of the ‘anamorphic’ perspective of European classical masters.

The Festival is free to attend for the public. The two-week festival will run from 1 March to 14 March 2016 from 4.00 pm to 10.00 pm on weekdays and from 10.00 am to 11.00 pm on the weekend.

Also Read: Dubai Canvas: Residents dive into optical illusion

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