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Louvre Abu Dhabi Announces Jury and Shortlisted Artists for Art Here 2024 and The Richard Mille Art Prize

Photo : Abu Dhabi Media Office

Louvre Abu Dhabi, in partnership with the prestigious Swiss watchmaker Richard Mille, has announced the jury and the artists shortlisted for its upcoming annual exhibition and competition, Art Here 2024, along with the Richard Mille Art Prize. This initiative underscores a commitment to nurturing the artistic community in the region by providing a significant platform for local and regional artists to showcase their creativity and works.

This year’s jury panel has been notably expanded to include members from North Africa in addition to the Gulf Region, reflecting a broader geographic scope. The panel consists of esteemed figures from diverse cultural sectors, ensuring a rich blend of perspectives in the selection process. Among them are Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan bin Khalifa Al Nahyan, an advisor to the UAE's Ministry of Foreign Affairs and a noted patron of international and regional art institutions; Guilhem André, the Scientific Curatorial and Collection Management Director at Louvre Abu Dhabi; and notable new members like Simon Njami, a respected curator and critic known for his focus on African and non-Western contemporary art, Emirati poet and filmmaker Nujoom Alghanem, and Maya Allison, the founding Director of the Art Gallery at New York University Abu Dhabi.

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For this edition, artists were invited by Louvre Abu Dhabi and guest curator Simon Njami to explore the theme "Awakenings," a concept that invites interpretations of new beginnings and the myriad possibilities that every moment holds. This theme challenges artists to create works that embody the idea of openness—be it through sculptures or audio-visual installations that question contemporary issues and envision the future.

Manuel Rabaté, Director of Louvre Abu Dhabi, expressed enthusiasm about the ongoing partnership with Richard Mille, highlighting how it facilitates the museum's ability to continuously innovate and introduce compelling themes like "Awakenings." He remarked on the significant expansion of this year's competition to include North Africa, enhancing the museum's commitment to representing a wider array of narratives and cultural dialogues.

This year's competition attracted 230 entries from artists residing across the UAE, the broader Gulf Region, and North Africa. Five artists have been shortlisted to display their works in the exhibition, each bringing unique perspectives and methodologies to their art. Férielle Doulain-Zouari from Tunisia delves into the intersection of the natural and artificial through her installations and sculptures. Emirati artist Lamya Gargash explores the nuances of inhabited and abandoned spaces, reflecting on cultural heritage amidst modernity. Egyptian artist Moataz Nasr discusses identity and belonging in a globalized context, while Sarah Almehairi from Abu Dhabi uses geometric forms to explore themes of language, memory, and materiality. Nicène Kossentini from Tunisia employs video to reveal intimate transformations of people and places, connecting deeply with her cultural heritage.

Peter Harrison, CEO of Richard Mille EMEA, expressed excitement about the expansion into North Africa and the dynamic cross-cultural dialogues it fosters. The Richard Mille Art Prize not only offers a substantial financial incentive of AED220,380 (US$60,000) but also serves as a prestigious accolade, celebrating the transformative power of art across cultures.

The exhibition will be hosted under the iconic dome of Louvre Abu Dhabi, starting from September 20, 2024. The visitor experience will encompass a journey around the courtyard with its Damascene fountain, leading through a meditative passageway toward a shallow pool and culminating at a public art wall installation by Jenny Holzer, setting the stage for a profound exploration of art and creativity.

July 5, 2024 1:21 p.m. 554

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