‘Moving Art’ comes to Dubai

From fine art in galleries, to street art and now moving objects, Saudi artist Shalimar Sharbatly, 48, seeks to imprint her art onto objects of every day use, in the first “Moving Art” exhibition she is holding in the Gulf.

The exhibition is held at the Aisha Al Abbar Art Gallery in the Al Quoz industrial area of Dubai, under the theme “Tribute to Women.” It runs from March 14 to April 30. The exhibition comprises work by eight women artists from around the world who have collaborated with Aisha Al Abbar, owner of the art gallery.  

“What I’m trying to show is unique art works to support young emerging artists as well as artists from our region,” said Al Abbar.  

Sharbatly aims to transform art from basic portraits into street art, on moving objects like cars, furniture, clothing and shoes. The idea behind her concept is that one can carry their own specialized arts and that art can be moved anywhere you go. Sharbatly works with established brands to create moving arts.

“As Shalimar cannot be present today, I have worked with her to spread more interest into the idea of moving arts especially in fashion, and interior design,” said Wafa Aldekhail, curator of Sharbatly’s exhibitions in the GCC, and owner of Artyles gallery in Saudi Arabia. “We picked out all the fashion pieces together, and chose Dubai because it’s a diverse community with a melting pot of cultures.”

Aldekhail said that Sharbatly’s work includes painting on leather in cars, and an upcoming project of hers consists of imprinting her work on Formula One cars which will be displayed in Dubai in July. She also exhibited leather jackets, which she had painted to give them distinctive colors.

“This event is a turning point in the spreading of ‘Moving Art’ in the Gulf area; especially in Dubai as there is an interest in luxury, fashion and art,” said Valentina Della Rocca, assistant at the Aisha Al Abbar Art Gallery.

Sharbatly is the first woman commissioned by the Saudi government to draw murals on the corniche of Jeddah and in front of the Palace of Hospitality. Sharbatly showed interest in art at the age of four years, as her mother was an artist too. 

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