Under the patronage of Her Royal Highness Sheikha Sabika bint Ibrahim Al Khalifa, wife of His Majesty the King of Bahrain and President of the Supreme Council for Women, the first edition of ArtBahrain will be held from October 13 to 16, 2015. The exhibition, set to take place at a specially constructed marquee in Manama, will feature works from acclaimed artists from around the world and their Bahraini peers and will aim to further enhance the art scene in Bahrain.

ArtBahrain aims to be a meeting place for artists, gallerists, cognoscenti and art lovers from around the world to share space, ideas and inspiration. Participating in the exhibition is the prestigious Bahrain Arts Society whose section in the exhibition will showcase the works of some of the biggest names in the Kingdom’s art scene.

Mr Ali Al Mahmeed, Chairman of the Bahrain Arts Society and a renowned artist himself, was very supportive of the initiative and said he “was confident that ArtBahrain would do well for the Society and Bahrain in general; offering an international art-loving audience the opportunity to encounter and engage with Bahraini art, and for Bahrainis to be introduced to international artists and their work”. 

Marwa bint Rashid Al Khalifa

Participating along with Bahrain Arts Society are top Bahraini galleries including Al Riwaq, Hend Gallery, Busaad Art Gallery, Art Divano and Amina Gallery. The event will also feature local artists including Jamal Abdul Rahim, Fayeeka Al Hassan, Sheikha Marwa Bint Rashid Al Khalifa, Shaikha Lulwa Bint Abdulaziz Al Khalifa, Uzma Dadabhai, Fuad Al Binfalah and Mariam Fakhro.

“Bahrain is fast emerging a major stakeholder in the art world and it is pertinent that we partner with these global institutions to allow the arts community to flourish,” says ArtBahrain co-founder Kaneka Subberwal. “It is my deep conviction that events like ArtBahrain will go a long way in encouraging art investment into the country. One of the reasons is that Bahrain has a refined appreciation and talent for art, which makes it a great location for an international art fair.” Subberwal is the Founder and Managing Director of Art Select, an art advisory that has curated the fair. 

Lulwa bint Abdulaziz Al Khalifa

Also on the agenda at ArtBahrain will be a series of interactive workshops and forums conducted by experts to encourage new collectors and the next generation of artists. Art investors of various backgrounds will share their first-hand experiences with visitors on collecting with the goal of elevating awareness about the art world. Visitors to the fair will also be invited to enjoy the first ever Art Lounge at an art fair, which aims to be an interactive platform, both social and cultural, encompassing a bookshop, an art supplies store and an artists’ working arena.

As part of the Art Bahrain project a book published by Miracle Graphics and authored by Mr. Renaud Siegmann will be launched especially for the event. This fully illustrated book will serve as a portfolio for 33 of Bahrain’s most prominent artists alongside personal interviews with them. The book offers a unique insight into the Kingdom’s emerging art scene and gives an opportunity to discover the long time commitment of modern and contemporary Bahraini artists as well as the new generations of mid-career and emerging artists.

Artist Jamal Abdulrahim - Om Kolthoumm, acrylic & mixed media, 2013

“As far as I have been involved as a critic and curator with the emerging art scenes, Bahrain holds a special place in terms of creativity in the Middle East and the global art community, not only are these Bahraini artists inspired by their own culture and traditions but their original and most recent works have given a rise in Arab art around the world”, says Renaud Siegmann – Commissioned Author.

‘The project is a mapping as well as a portraiture of the state of the art scene in Bahrain today which will increase the visibility and give an insight of Bahrain internationally’, says Mr. Sameer Ghaith, CEO of Miracle Graphics.

ArtBahrain List of Exhibitors :

Bahrain Arts Society: www.bahartsociety.org.bh  

Al Riwaq Art Space: www.alriwaqartspace.com

Hend Gallery  : www.hendgallery.com

Busaad Art Gallery: www.busaad.com

Art Divano: www.artdivano.com

Amina Gallery: www.aminagallery.com