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Art Dubai 2024: Migrant Narratives and Artistic Healing Take Center Stage

DALL·E 2024 01 19 17.40.26 Create a realistic image of a couple of people at an art fair standing and gazing at a piece of traditional art. The setting should be an indoor gall

A Confluence of Cultural Discourse and Artistic Expression

Dubai, January 19, 2024 – Art Dubai 2024, the city’s premier cultural event, is setting a thematic focus on the migrant experience and the potent role of art in healing and hope. Scheduled to take place at Madinat Jumeirah from March 1 to 3, the art fair is strategically positioning itself as a hub for artistic dialogue that resonates with the Middle East and the broader Global South.

Reflecting the Pulsating Heart of a Diverse Region

Pablo del Val, the artistic director of Art Dubai, emphasizes the fair’s commitment to mirroring the city’s diverse DNA. It’s a reflection not just of the local community’s aesthetics and beliefs but also of the region’s evolving concerns—ranging from climate impacts to the nuanced identities shaped by migration.

Deep-Dive Discussions and Global Representation

Regular discussions with the regional arts community have informed this year’s selection, with over 100 galleries participating, including several first-timers spurred by eight years of dialogue. The fair boasts a record number of local galleries and a diverse price range of artworks, from high-end pieces to more accessible works by emerging artists.

Local Market Connectivity and Global South Spotlight

Art Dubai thrives on its local market connectivity, offering a space that addresses the daily life of Dubai residents. With 67 percent of galleries coming from the Global South and even Western galleries dedicating space to non-western artists, Art Dubai is redefining the Global South beyond geography, touching on the migrant experience’s rich tapestry.

Commissioned Works and Performative Healing

The fair’s commissioned pieces are set to address the region’s realities, including the aftermath of the Israel-Gaza conflict. The Bawwaba section, curated by Emiliano Valdes, will explore artistic healing through exhibitions by Global South artists, with performances that invite visitors to engage in the healing process.

Digital Art and Historical Connections

Art Dubai is also enhancing its digital section, presenting artworks that utilize technologies like augmented reality, AI, and NFTs, yet maintain the essence of traditional art. The fair’s Modern and Collector Talks will explore artistic connections during the Cold War, unveiling the influence of Soviet education on artists from the Global South.

Climate Discussions and Anticipated Speakers

The Global Art Forum will tackle how extreme weather can catalyze change across various sectors. With a lineup of renowned speakers, including Stephanie Rosenthal and artists Monira Al Qadiri and Gabriel Alonso, the fair is set to unveil a comprehensive list of participating artists and galleries in the weeks to come.


Art Dubai 2024 promises to be a landmark edition, where art serves as a conduit for collective healing and a canvas for migrant narratives. In the vibrant cultural landscape of Dubai, the fair continues to champion diverse artistic expressions and critical discourse.

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