Dubai’s growing art scene is making way for a new wave of international street artists and emerging pop-art culture, according to street art-focused galleries participating at this week’s World Art Dubai, the region’s only accessible and affordable art fair.

As the fifth edition of World Art Dubai heads into the weekend, established art buyers and curious bargain hunters have been captivated with the show’s greatest portfolio of artists showcasing new art styles. With more than 150 artists and galleries at World Art Dubai 2019, street-inspired art is represented heavily among the 3,000-plus artworks at the fair. Key exhibitors believe the trend indicates Dubai’s potential for further growth as an emerging art destination.

Pure Evil at World Art Dubai 2019
Pure Evil at World Art Dubai 2019

“Although there is a large Arabic street art market here, western art isn’t as appreciated here as much as it will be. The market is changing though,” said Louis Wright, Owner, Vandalist Art. “There needs to be more people pushing the educational side to show people that these works are accessible and affordable – we need to increase awareness of the long-term investment value in art.”

The London-based conceptual art house, a first-time World Art Dubai exhibitor, is optimistic about Dubai’s growing acceptance of new art methods and is keen to support opportunities through education of consumers. In addition to its stand, Vandalist Art will be hosting a Curated Art Talks session on the topic of ‘From Graffiti to Canvas’ featuring artists Ben Eine and Pure Evil. Both artists are exhibiting on the Vandalist Art stand, which boasts limited-edition prints and stenciled work from major international street art names, including the infamous Banksy. “We picked these guys for a few reasons. Firstly, to show what street art is and, secondly, because we wanted to highlight that there’s room in the market to buy investment grade street art at affordable prices at an affordable art fair,” Wright added.

World Art Dubai features a number of live installations
World Art Dubai features a number of live installations

Joining the pool of international exhibitors is local artist Amrita Sethi, who unveiled her hotly- anticipated Art Voice-Note© Collection last month: “It’s based on flipping the concept of an image meaning a thousand words- we’re letting words be worth a thousand pictures. The idea is that I capture the shape of the voice note, I then customize the individual lines to reflect the meaning of the word,” said Sethi.

“This is my first time at World Art Dubai and I’m very excited to be part of this affordable art platform,” Sethi added. “The fair has a perfect collection for new and emerging collectors. It’s a fair where people come to buy, not just come to look. World Art Dubai is crucial for the art scene right now because World Art Dubai is one of those exhibitions that provides a platform, not only for international artists and galleries to come and exhibit here, but it is a major platform for emerging artists in such a beautiful setting.”

Workshops underway at World Art Dubai 2019
Workshops underway at World Art Dubai 2019

Visitors looking to engage further with the show will be able to register for a number of workshops and curated art talks and demonstrations throughout the event. Key features include Flowing Abstract Art for Adults hosted by Valentina Alexeevna on Saturday at 5:30pm, an Arabic Calligraphy Workshop with Diaa on Friday at 3pm and Japanese Paper Cut-Out by Yukio Kuu at 6:30pm on Friday.

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