LONDON - Greatly anticipated this year, Abu Dhabi Art fair will unveil more than a few treasures. Anyone who has kept up with the art press will know that the Art Newspaper has given prominent reference to the exhibition which will show selections from the Guggenheim Abu Dhabi collection. Local press has hailed the extraordinary architectural feat that is the roof of the Louvre Abu Dhabi – now installed. Dreams are finally taking shape, and we are invited to share the birth and joy of it.

Saadiyat Cultural District in Abu Dhabi.

Speaking to Cultural Sector Executive Director Rita Aoun-Abdo, she said, “In its 6th edition, Abu Dhabi Art highlights a distinctive year as it reflects the ambition and scope of Abu Dhabi’s cultural landscape. Given its close proximity to next year’s launch of the Louvre Abu Dhabi, the line-up of returning and new galleries, the launch of its public art initiative, its performing arts programme and its public forum curated around the importance of museums and cultural centers as places of discovery and new experiences, Abu Dhabi Art gives visitors the opportunity to witness the evolution of a city and its tangible transition to a center for culture and excellence. A very inspiring programme with great artists such as Patti Smith, William Kentridge, Martin Creed, Hassan Hajjaj and others will provide ample engagement for the audience, supplemented by the possibility of visits to sites of cultural and artistic heritage.”

A forum at Abu Dhabi Art 2013.

For my part, the opportunity to view Seeing Through Light, selections from the Guggenheim Abu Dhabi is a special draw. Though I had seen the landmark Abu Dhabi Louvre exhibition in Paris, I am even more excited to see the GAD collection in the purpose-built Manarat Al Saadiyat. With galleries such as Acquavella, Hauser and Wirth, Ropac, Nahem, Kukje/Tina Kim, Enrico Navarra, and the best of the regional galleries, I know there will be excellent fare. Important collectors have now become fans of this fair and will arrive fresh from Frieze and FIAC, ready to savour the more international and eye-opening occasion that is Abu Dhabi Art. Just let us hope the heavens will not open this year, and the typical balmy autumn of the Gulf will embrace its devoted art pilgrims.


Abu Dhabi Art, 5–8 November

Lead image: Exterior of Guggenheim Abu Dhabi