6 alternative art happenings to look forward to in Dubai this May

Not your typical art class…

If you’re looking to live your best artsy-aesthetic-cool person life, Dubai is the place to be. Here we have all measures and matters of creative spaces, from arthouse cinemas to museums, painting workshops to co-working cafes, collectibles stores and beyond. There’s a whole lot of culture and all of it very cool – the ruffled-skirt-and-samba wearing, green-juice-slurping, meaning-of-life-pondering cool. Mark your May calendars for all these alternative art happenings.

All the new exhibits at Alserkal Avenue

Several galleries in the Alserkal Avenue space will be opening brand new exhibitions from across the spectrum on May 7, showcasing stunning collections from the minds of some of the best and brightest in the art world here.

The Third Line is opening two new shows The Sky of the Seven Valleys by Ala Ebtekarand and Looking, dwelling, leaving by Khalid Jauffer. Green Art Gallery will be hosting Reverberations, a collection across different artists featuring works by M’barek Bouhchichi, Sayan Chanda, Himali Singh Soin, and Swapnaa Tamhane.

Grey Noise will be opening A mirror in my pocket by Fazal Rizvi running until July. Gallery Isabelle is hosting Allegorical Ruins, a journey through time and memory by Lebanese artist Raed Yassin running until June 27. Lawrie Shabibi will be opening the first-ever solo exhibition for artist, architect and researcher Dima Srouji titled Charts for a Resurrection.

Technology and art come together at MUTEK.AE

On May 4 and 5, Alserkal Avenue will transform into a hub for digital art, culture, music and technology. Expect to see mesmerising debut performances, special installations and cutting-edge electronic music with daring audiovisual experimentation. There’s a whole list of exciting, alternative acts, including 9T Antiope, Burnt Friedman & João Pais Filipe, Bint Mbareh, Mathew Jonson and Salar Ansari Trio, Line Katcho, Stefana Fratila x Diana Lynn VanderMeulen and Idlefon and more. Read all about it here.

Stunning regional cinema at Cinema Akil

Catch classical regional cinema at everyone’s favourite resident arthouse for a dose of alternative art. This May, the venue is screening two wonderful regional stories – Hajjan by A.B Shawky and Dancing On The Edge of a Volcano by Cyril Aris. Hajjan follows the story of Matar, who must fight with all he has for the life of Hofira. The work is a tribute to the desert, the Bedouin way of life, their rich culture and the world of camel racing. The screenings will run from May 3 to 16, with a Zoom Q&A session with the director after the screening on May 3.

On The Edge of a Volcano is set in August, 2020, when the explosion that hit the Beirut’s port destroyed a large part of the capital. Despite the havoc wreaked from the explosion, a Lebanese film crew in the midst of shooting a movie decide to continue on, facing new challenges with economic collapse and societal disarray. The screenings will run from May 10 to May 30.

Unconventional art workshops to learn fun new skills

You can book a number of fun, creative workshops for some alternative art like rattan weaving, perfume making, bukhour making and working with jasmonite, to name a few. It’s a great way to learn a new skill, do something different, get away from a screen perhaps. Perfume making workshops are a plenty in the city, with options at PARFUMERY, Atelier Perfumery and Oo La Lab, where you can also make bukhour. The Workshop hosts these and all the other’s mentioned above, along with the usual painting and embroidery stuff. You can follow this link to book yours.

Step into a unique immersive art experience

ARTE MUSEUM DUBAI will take visitors through a journey beyond time and space with their ‘ETERNAL NATURE’ Exhibition, where they will traverse across 14 zones filled with stunning works and powerful elements of nature. As you move through the galleries, you will be surrounded by blooming camellia flowers, beautiful waves, lush forest landscapes, tranquil starfields stretching infinitely around you.

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Visitors can also stimulate all their senses for a truly engaging experience by interacting with the ‘LIVE SKETCHBOOK’ exhibit, which allows them to draw their own animal on paper, scan it and give it life on the walls of the exhibition surrounded by the sights and sounds of a peaceful jungle.

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Tickets start at Dhs109 for early bird and Twilight time slots (10am to 11.30pm and 9.30pm to last admission). Available at dubai.artemuseum.com.

 A fusion of ballet and fashion

For a different kind of alternative art, The Rome Opera Ballet at the Dubai Opera premiers in Dubai this month and is a seamless fusion of ballet and haute couture. For a long time now, the Rome Opera Ballet has been known for creating exquisite renditions of the classics. This rich history of famous performances will grace Dubai for the very first time as this time, they bring to life their exceptional interpretation of ‘Les Deux Nuits’, further elevated by the artistry of costumes crafted by the renowned house of Dior. Learn more here.

Images: Supplied/Socials 

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