Al Hamriyah Studios: The New Art Space of Sharjah Art Foundation
On 19 February 2017 the Sharjah Art Foundation (SAF) inaugurated its new art space at Al Hamriyah. This new artist workspaces and exhibition areas were officially opened by HH Sheikh Dr Sultan Al Qasimi, member of the Federal Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah.
Expanding SAF’s program, this off-site venue located on the Sharjah coast and in close proximity to Ajman, Umm Al Quwain and Ras Al Khaimah, Al Hamriyah Studios also extends the Foundation’s outreach activities to different local communities in the northern Emirates.
Programmes at the new venue will build on already established education initiatives in the local area. At Al Hamriyah Art Centre, one of the Foundation’s six art centres across the central and eastern regions of the Emirate, SAF programming has engaged local audiences through a focus on education workshops ranging from painting, sculpture and calligraphy to ceramics and photography. As part of Sharjah Biennial 13: Tamawuj (SB13), SB13 School – a special year-long education programme – has offered workshops in Al Hamriyah that are rooted in the four keywords forming the conceptual framework of the biennial (water, crops, earth and culinary). In addition, Al Hamiryah Studios will be one of the venues exhibiting existing works as well as newly commissioned projects.
In his design of Al Hamriyah Studios, Emirati architect Khaled Al Najjar of the award-winning local firm dxb.lab combines avant-garde and modern architectural technologies with regionally-inspired customs and traditions of the built environment. In keeping with SAF’s other urban development projects, which have readapted historic architectural elements to new uses, Al Hamriyah Studios were constructed on the site of a former souq. Conversing with the site’s history and prior use as an introverted market space, the footprint of the courtyard and periphery have largely been maintained and transformed into an open, more fluid space, which allows for a communal social and spatial experience around contemporary art.
The studios include a 2510.8 m2 community space, hubs of social interaction occupying the 761.8 m2 courtyard, a large multi-functional room and a pantry space with its large communal table. The courtyard will host public events, including outdoor cinema screenings and performances.
Visitors can register for daily boat trips to Al Hamiryah Studios during Sharjah Biennial 13 opening week, registering by 7 March 2017 at firstname.lastname@example.org.
About Sharjah Art Foundation:
Sharjah Art Foundation brings a broad range of contemporary art and cultural programmes to the communities of Sharjah, the UAE and the region. Since 2009, SAF has built on the history of cultural collaboration and exchange that began with the first Sharjah Biennial in 1993. Working with local and international partners, the foundation creates opportunities for artists and artistic production through its core initiatives that include the Sharjah Biennial, the annual March Meeting, residencies, production grants, commissions, exhibitions, research, publications and growing collection. The education and public programmes focus on building recognition of the central role art can play in the life of a community by promoting public learning and a participatory approach to art. All events are free and open to the public.
For more information, visit Sharjah Art Foundation website.
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Alyazeyah Al Reyaysa
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