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Dubai Enriches Its Visual Identity Via ‘Public Art Strategy’



Dubai Enriches Its Visual Identity Via 'Public Art Strategy'

The Dubai Culture and Arts Authority (Dubai Culture) has launched its new initiative of Public Art Strategy to transform the Emirate city into an open global art gallery by incorporating public aesthetics into urban spaces.

The Public Art Strategy is in line with the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai to make Dubai one of the best destination cities in the world that offers a truly global experience and aims to become the capital of the global creative economy by 2026.

The Public Art Strategy aims to support Dubai’s creative economy

The creative endeavor headed by Her Highness Sheikha Latifa bint Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Chairperson of Dubai Culture and Member of the Dubai Council will make efforts to create an enthralling artistic expression that is channeled through the visual culture of Dubai city. This will also help foster a new era of creative economy that will contribute to Dubai’s rich cultural heritage. 

The Public Art Strategy aims to support Dubai's creative economy

Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum greenlighted the Public Art Strategy in January 2022. Under the project, the public spaces of Dubai like the streets, public areas, and neighborhood residential areas will be creatively transformed into artistic hotspots which will attract tourists as these common locations would be transformed into cultural destinations.

Dubai Culture’s effective strategies implemented under the direction of Sheikha Latifa bint Mohammed will take the competent assistance of stakeholders and creative institutions to materialize this aesthetic project. 

The public spaces will be filled with paintings, artworks, murals, art installations, and sculptures that would be signifying the identity and spirit of the Emirate and it will also help establish a mutual relationship between the artists and the general public.

The Dubai Economic Agenda (D33) seeks to double the overall growth of the Dubai economy by 2033 and the Public art initiative is one of the chief projects that will contribute to the GDP of Dubai. The enhancement of public spaces through creative projects has been done in many countries and this is a major publicity strategy for tourism-related growth.

Dubai is also aiming at encouraging a creative economy to proliferate within its urban economy that will effectively establish a sustainable public space merging with a global community culture. The Emirate city will be an incubator for creative artists from all over the world and will promote a wider cultural movement within the localized spaces of the city using various visual and artistic fervor.  

The authority realizes the importance of a collaborative effort in the success of this project and it has contacted institutions like Tashkeel, Alserkal, Art Jameel, Akaas Visual Arts, and Art Dubai for providing professional and creative assistance. These centers are issuing open calls to artists to represent their unique site-specific art installations.

Dubai Culture has recently updated the status of the Public Art Strategy initiative by launching a Dh 2 million art project with Art Dubai as part of the inaugural commission and an open call to Emirati and UAE-based artists, architects, and designers to present their artistic ideas and suggestions for the installation of the first large-scale site-specific artwork.

The location chosen for the installation of the first artwork is the Al Hudaiba gardens which overlooks the Etihad museum and Union House. This is considered as one of the most beautiful public gardens and a major tourist spot in the region.  

Among the submitted list of works, an expert committee shall select the ideal artwork to be installed in the gardens by the end of 2023. The committee shall consist of Carlo Rizzo, Special Advisor to Dubai Public Art; Benedetta Ghione, Executive Director of Art Dubai; and Maryam Mohammed Mudhaffar, Project Manager at the Museums Department at Dubai Culture and Arts Authority. The first phase of submissions shall be received by 11:59 p.m. UAE standard time on the 12th of February 2023.

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Submissions that are shortlisted will be announced on the 16th edition of Art Dubai to be held from 1 – 5th March 2023 and the shortlisted candidates will receive a token of $5000 to create a detailed proposal and prototype of their first phase submissions. By the end of 2023, the official winner will be announced and the artwork will be unveiled at the decided spot in Al Hudaiba gardens. More details about the open call are available at the official website of Dubai Culture and Arts Authority at and other major Dubai social media pages. 

The Authority has created a complete blueprint for the strategy and the different locations in the Emirate city have also been decided where the creative works would be installed. The Public Art Strategy aligns itself with the Dubai 2040 Urban Master Plan that’s aimed at improving the overall quality of life in Dubai by offering a global-level, sustainable urban experience. It will also induct Dubai into the world’s most favorite travel, work, and residential destination in a span of the next twenty years.               

Content writer and social science researcher with 5 plus years of experience in research. He has published academic and non-academic articles on several online platforms covering wide-ranging subjects. He is also a tech enthusiast, bibliophile, and an avid fan of video games.

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