A space that encourages a dialogue between creatives and their audience is a welcomed addition to Dubai, particularly with the eponymous Art Dubai around the corner.
Nestled at the base of the world’s tallest building, Burj Khalifa, the recently opened Pavilion, which was formerly the Emaar sales office, will be a hub for those in need of inspiration. Housed in this are two spacious galleries, (called One and Two), a cinema, a library, a shisha café, espresso bar, lounge and a modern café run by the Emaar Hospitality Group.
Designed by Canadian interior architect Abboud Malak, The Pavilion offers 1,400 square metres (15,000 square feet) for anyone to come to discuss art and culture in a comfortable and modern space. This initiative is sure to capture the interest of anyone who has had to endure a meeting in a franchise coffee house amidst the scraping chairs, hissing of steam and the café playlist on a constant loop.
The design of the interior is deliberate; a light airy space with high walls, ceilings and a concrete finish give it a very gallery-like feel and is complemented with an expansive grassed area outside to balance the stark materials. Different artists and installations will feature year round. One of the first is a unique light installation by James Clar; 300 fluorescent lights spell out the words ’MEDIA HYPE’ on the main hall of Gallery One, meant to provoke thought about today’s society, and the influence of the media. Outside stands a large sculpture by Lebanese interior designer Pierre Abboud. Standing 7 metres high and 24 metres in length, it was created in honour of last year’s UAE National Day.
The first exhibition in Gallery Two will be an installation by street graffiti artist, The Bow Terrorist. A graffiti stencil that reads, “i am impressed…” is painted along the length of the wall, depicting strength of meaning, passion and character. Satirical street art also finds its way in and throughout areas of the Pavilion, a novel idea for a city that has not cared too fondly for street art in the past.
Emaar is serious about bringing an authentic, creative space to Dubai–they will also host book launches, artist talks, film screenings, musical performances, workshops and children’s events. The odds are in its favour for creating a space that will inspire, advocate and encourage the inner creative in all.