Fine Art Comes of Age in the UAE

Fine Art Comes of Age in the UAE

by Suchitra Bajpai Chaudhary via “Gulf News

Dubai: The month-long art season in Dubai that concluded last week demonstrated the maturity and coming of age of the art market here, further establishing Dubai as the regional art hub.

Several record-breaking auctions were conducted dring the season. With over 60 art galleries and museums in the city, viewing and buying art has is now an established part of Dubai’s cultural agenda. The scope of this development over the last eight or nine years can be gauged from the fact that in a span of a month, Dubai now hosts an active art calendar with the Dubai art week, Design days and Sikka art fairs all happening simultaneously.

“ It is phenomenal how Dubai developed into the art space in the past eight-nine years.” Hala Khayat, Head of Sales at Christie’s, UAE.

  “Art is an alternative asset and does not replace traditional assets. It is used to alleviate the risk in your traditional financial portfolio. When stocks and bonds go down, art goes up.”
 ” This synergy has attracted art curators and galleries from around the world to display and interact here. This has helped Dubai evolve into an attractive art trade market.

All major auction houses and art fund houses have opened offices here and have been doing robust business. This is proof that good art sells at a high price and there are as many buyers in the market here as sellers.

The Pharaoh’s Collection of Modern Egyptian Art, expected to sell for around $1.4 million (Dh4.68 million) made $3.89 million (Dh 14.03 million). The top lot of the sale, also from the Collection, was Abdul Hadi El-Gazzar’s (Egyptian, 1925-1965)Construction of the Suez Canal which sold for $1.02 million, a new world auction record for the artist. . . . .”

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