Art Exhibitions


As the world continues to navigate troubled times, one self-taught artist in Dubai has been relentless in her efforts to spread hope and positivity across borders. She’s Rowaida Hakim, a coveted Lebanese-born and Dubai-based creative, who has launched a virtual exhibition that offers an impressive blend of art and technology.

“The main reason I’m creating such a large-scale virtual art exhibition is to show how nothing can stop us,” Rowaida tells Villa 88. “Spending the majority of my life in the UAE has greatly impacted me. The UAE is a country of positivity, peace and opportunities. It has played a major role in my success.”

Every painting I’ve made is endowed with a special meaning.

Being regarded as one of the largest virtual art shows held by a solo artist, the ‘Hope’ exhibition houses 70 paintings using virtual reality, so that viewers can have the same immersive experience as they would physically. “There are 70 artworks in this exhibition, as many people feel positive about the number 7,” explains Rowaida.

A detail of Happy Flowers by Rowaida Hakim

On view is a diverse body of work that Rowaida has created over the last 10 years, including the glorious Dubai Nights and Dancing Colors paintings, which are only available for viewing. Among other highlights are Happy Flowers (2020), featuring a golden canvas bedecked with flowers on one side.

Also to satiate your visual appetite are Love Situation, Baraka, which translates to ‘blessing’ in Arabic, and Pyramids of Gems, which features around 307 diamonds, applied with a new technique that involves the use of body paint instead of glue. Then, there’s Rowaida’s latest series, Universe, which depicts the galaxies and solar system with 24-carat gold leaf, diamonds, rubies and emeralds.

Dancing Colors by Rowaida Hakim

The main reason I’m creating such a large-scale virtual art exhibition is to show how nothing can stop us.

The pièce de résistance is the painting titled Hope (2020), with cherry blossom flowers on a blue canvas and golden mountains in the backdrop, which took six months to complete. “I love this work because it transmits a very warm feeling of happiness and reflects how the flowers open after winter,” Rowaida states. “Because after every hardship, there’s ease. Let’s hope that better times are to come.”

Hope by Rowaida Hakim

A nod to abstraction and impressionism, Rowaida’s works are filled with colorful impasto, swirling brushstrokes, and her signature use of metal and 18-carat gold leafs, with each being an exquisite meditation on themes such as cultural understanding, humanity, and hope amidst despair. In one of her paintings, she uses saffron and water to create sand dunes and reflect the beauty of nature. “Every painting I’ve made is endowed with a special meaning. And I want to say, ‘Thank you, nature’.”

Kalam min Zahab by Rowaida Hakim

But putting together such an expansive showcase virtually can be no easy feat. “It took months to get the plan ready,” Rowaida shares. “With God’s Blessings, it was a smooth process and I’m grateful to everyone who provided me with support. Thank you to my role model in life, HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, whose words are the main inspiration behind my success. Special thanks to Galleria Mall Al Barsha and Four Seasons Hotel for their support with the photo shoot.”

Glamour by Rowaida Hakim

In addition to her work as an artist, Rowaida runs an eponymous luxury interior design company. In 2018, she staged a one-day viewing of her works at Sotheby’s Dubai and has since hosted multiple solo exhibitions in Dubai, and participated in Salon d’Art, an international fair at the Carrousel du Louvre in Paris.

The ‘Hope’ virtual art exhibition will be live for one month and may be extended on demand. Select paintings are also available to be viewed with prior booking at Rowaida Interiors DMCC, Jumeirah Lakes Towers.

View Rowaida Hakim’s ‘Hope’ virtual art exhibition now: Rowaidahakim.com/exhibitions 

The next stop on the international art fair circuit? Foire Internationale d’Art Contemporain (FIAC) kicks off tomorrow until 20 October, promising a spectacular mix of art and moments that reward deeper thought and meaning. Among the highlights are works by icons Yayoi Kusama and Némo Digital Arts Biennale, which raises the question, “Is the human race destined to disappear?” What do you think?

Images: @fiacparis

Louvre Abu Dhabi will soon be home to an international exhibition featuring around 85 works by 20th-century modern masters.  Titled ‘Rendezvous in Paris: Picasso, Chagall, Modigliani & Co. (1900-1939)’, the show will present the creative production of emigrant artists who lived and worked in Paris in the first half of the 20th century.

Chaïm Soutine. The Best Man. 1924-1925. Oil on canvas. © RMN-Grand Palais (musée de l’Orangerie) / Hervé Lewandowski. Collection Jean Walter and Paul Guillaume

On view will be more than 80 works by artists including Pablo Picasso, Amedeo Modigliani, Marc Chagall, Juan Gris, Constantin Brancusi and Tamara de Lempicka. Held in collaboration with Paris’ Center Pompidou and Agence Grance-Muséums, the multimedia exhibition will feature paintings, sculptures and photographs that reference Paris of the roaring 20s. The showcase has been curated by Christian Briend, Chief Curator and Head of Modern Collections at Musée national d’art moderne, Centre Pompidou, assisted by Anna Hiddleston-Galloni, Assistant Curator, Modern collections at Musée national d’art moderne, Centre Pompidou.

It will trace the journeys of the iconic artists and the evolution of modern art styles, meditating on the ideas of displacement and multiculturalism that these cultural producers experienced as they left their home countries to settle in Paris to pursue their artistic dreams. Among the masterpieces to be displayed are Picasso’s Woman Seated in an Armchair (1910), Chagall’s To Russia, Asses and Others (1911), and Modigliani’s Portrait of Dédié (1918).

Amadeo de Souza-Cardoso. Cavaleiros (Riders). 1913. Oil on canvas. © Philippe Migeat – Centre Pompidou, MNAM-CCI /Dist. RMN-GP

“We are confident that ‘Rendezvous in Paris: Picasso, Chagall, Modigliani & Co (1900-1939)’ will be a blockbuster exhibition, a great start to our ambitious new 2019-20 season,” Manuel Rabaté, Director of Louvre Abu Dhabi, said in a release. “For the first time ever in Abu Dhabi, residents and visitors will be able to see works by Picasso, Chagall, Modigliani, Delaunay, Lipchitz and other masters in a show encompassing the key movements of 20th century Modern art. This gathering of the widest-ever range of classical Modernists’ works in the UAE reflects our commitment to bringing art from all over the world to our diverse audience.”

Jules Pascin. Alfred Flechtheim dressed as a Toreador. 1925. Oil on canvas. © Georges Meguerditchian – Centre Pompidou, MNAM-CCI /Dist. RMN-GP

Running from 17 September to 8 December, the exhibition will also feature cultural programming, a highlight of which is the Family Weekend (27-28 September), which will feature workshops inspired by the art of display. The programme will also include a series of film screenings proposed by Dubai-based artist Hind Mezaina.

For more information, visit Louvreabudhabi.ae.