1. The launch of the Global Art Forum_6 at Mathaf will focus on the relationship betweennews-makers and history-making in the Arab world.DOHA, March 7, 2012: Mathaf: Arab Museum of Modern Art announced today that it shallco-host the sixth edition of the Global Art Forum, the Middle East, North Africa and SouthAsia (MENASA) regions platform for cultural debate and discussion. The event, which aimsat fostering audiences for art, starts at Mathaf, March 18-19 before continuing to Art Dubai,Madinat Jumeirah, March 21-24. It will feature around 50 experts, including museumdirectors, curators, art professionals and filmmakers.“Mathaf is committed to supporting arts education and discourse, as evident in our approachto exhibitions as well as our ongoing public programs. Our collaboration with the Global ArtForum is a dynamic way for us to bring an engaging platform of speakers to Doha and we areproud to continue our partnership with other leading arts institutions across the Gulf,“ saidWassan Al-Khudairi, Director of Mathaf.Newly expanded to six days for 2012, the Global Art Forum_6 is presented by Art Dubai, inpartnership with Mathaf: Arab Museum of Modern Art, and is supported by the Dubai Culture& Arts Authority. The Global Art Forum was founded by Art Dubai in 2007, and this is thethird year that the forum has opened in Doha.“Over the past five years, the Global Art Forum has become a major, collaborative event inthe art world calendar. This year, it reinvents itself in terms of format and subject and, whilerooted in the art world, delves into other disciplines," said Antonia Carver, Art Dubai FairDirector. "The 2012 edition of the Forum includes an array of fascinating regional andinternational voices from the worlds of film, journalism, economics, social media, publishing,and of course art. Most are speaking in the Gulf for the first time.”Directed by writer Shumon Basar and entitled „The Medium of Media‟, the Forum is re-inventing itself this year. Along with the familiar array of lectures, conversations, discussions,and workshops, it includes a new roster of commissioned projects that precede and succeedthe live days. Thematically, the Global Art Forum_6 looks at the double meaning of the termmedia, both within the art world and referring to the world of publishing and reportage.Underpinning this is a look back at the past year in the Arab world, and how fundamentalevents have been both produced and consumed as media. The Global Art Forum_6 is,effectively, a media production about media.
2. The launch of the Global Art Forum_6 at Mathaf will focus on the relationship between news-makers and history-making in the Arab world, and the increasing phenomena of artiststurning to the medium of feature film making. Speakers in Doha include: CEO and WallisAnnenberg director of LACMA Michael Govan; novelist and artist Douglas Coupland;Serpentine Gallery co-director of exhibitions and programmes and director of internationalprojects Hans Ulrich Obrist; writer / critic Sukhdev Sandhu; film-producer Anna Lena Vaney;artist Shezad Dawood; Demotix founder Turi Munthe; commentators Sultan Suood AlQassemi, Yasmine El Rashidi and Mishaal Al Gergawi; curator Lara Khaldi; Bidoun senioreditor Michael C. Vazquez; 032c editor / art historian Victoria Camblin; and Ghida FakhryKhane, News and Programmes Presenter, Al Jazeera English. The event will also include ascreening of Over Your Cities Grass will Grow by filmmaker Sophie Fiennes.The program in Doha begins with the presentation of a new collaboration between the GlobalArt Forum and Mathaf: an interactive Arabic Art Glossary, led by curator Lara Khaldi. Anevolving platform through which to build a database of arts terms and definitions in Arabic,the glossary will provide arts practitioners, institutions, students and translators with anunparalleled resource.Global Art Forum_6 also features the launch of Forum-Forum, a media resource space toshowcase commissioned and relevant projects. Housed both in Mathafs Library and at ArtDubai, Forum-Forum links the conversations across the two locations. Forum-Forum isdesigned as a way to keep the Global Art Forum‟s topics alive in a physical space for visitorsto contemplate and enjoy at their own pace, including videos of the talks themselves. The TMcommissioned projects at the Global Art Forum _6 include a series of PowerPoints bywriters and artists, curated by Victoria Camblin, featuring Ayshay+KariAltmann, DouglasCoupland (keynote), Goldin & Senneby, LuckyPDF, and Alexander Provan (Triple Canopy); a„Dictionary of the Mediatized Gulf‟ by Qatari artist-writer Sophia Al Maria; a publication ofcommissioned texts entitled „Some Medium Stories‟, edited by Michael Vazquez featuringEmily Dische-Becker, Tom Francis, Kai Friese, Kristine Khouri and Nicholas Sautin; a MiddleEast News Archive blog by Mariam Wissam Al Dabbagh entitled „Arshafa E3lamiya‟; as wellas works by artists Hala Alhedeithy, Isak Berbic and Banu Cennetoglu. Brusselssprout andHind Mezaina present unique UAE research too.“The Global Art Forum_6 is an exciting opportunity for Doha‟s students, artists and generalinterested public to join a critical discussion about topics that are relevant to today‟s complexmedia environment as much as to the process of art making. Forum Forum expands ourexperience of traditional dialogue formats and the interactive Arabic Art Glossary ensuresthat the discourse that begins here will have a lasting impact well into the future,” saidMichelle Dezember, Head of Education at Mathaf.Contributors featured as the Global Art Forum_6 subsequently moves to Art Dubai, March21-24 include: Douglas Coupland and Hans Ulrich Obrist; novelist Amin Maalouf; art marketreporter Georgina Adam; geo-strategist and author Parag Khanna; artists Wael Shawky andMichael Rakowitz; curators Jack Persekian, Nat Muller and Defina Foundation‟s AaronCezar; Bidoun senior editor Negar Azimi; critic / journalist Josephine Bosma; writer / editorAlexander Provan; the Forum Fellows led by art critic Kaelen Wilson-Goldie; and a number ofthe participants from the Forum-Forum.The Global Art Forum_6 talks schedule is available online at http://artdubai.ae/gafschedule.The program starts at 3:00 pm till 6:15 pm on March 18 and from 2:00 pm till 7:00 pm onMarch 19.
3. About MathafThe first institution of its kind in the region, Mathaf offers an Arab perspective on modern andcontemporary art and supports creativity, promotes dialogue and inspires new ideas. The5,500-square-meter (59,000-square-foot) Museum, located in a former school building inDoha‟s Education City, has a collection that offers a rare comprehensive overview of modernArab art, representing the major trends and sites of production spanning the 1840s throughthe present. Mathaf presents exhibitions that situate the Arab world in relation to a larger artcontext and also offers programs that engage the local and international community,encourage research and scholarship and contribute to the cultural landscape of the Gulfregion, the Middle East, the Arab Diaspora and beyond.On view from December 5, 2011 through May 26, 2012, Mathaf‟s current exhibition Cai Guo-Qiang: Saraab (“mirage” in Arabic) showcases work by Cai Guo-Qiang, one of the premierartists in the contemporary art world. The exhibition connects the history and culture of Cai‟shometown of Quanzhou, China, to that of Doha, Qatar, illuminating the long-standing butlittle-known multilayered relationship between China and the Arab world. Curated by WassanAl-Khudhairi, director of Mathaf, the exhibition includes 17 newly commissioned pieces, aselection of recent works on paper, canvas, and porcelain, and documentary videos on themaking of Saraab.For further information, please visit www.mathaf.org.qaAbout Qatar Museums AuthorityEstablished in 2005 by His Highness the Emir, Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Al Thani to combinethe resources of all museums in the State of Qatar, Qatar Museums Authority (QMA) is agovernmental organization whose remit is to develop museums and cultural institutions andprovide an effective system for collecting, protecting, preserving and interpreting historic sites,monuments and artifacts. Under the leadership of its Chairperson H.E. Sheikha Al Mayassa,QMA is transforming the State of Qatar into a cultural hub of the Middle East. The Museum ofIslamic Art, inaugurated in 2008, is the Authority‟s flagship project. The organization wonfurther global acclaim with the December 2010 opening of Mathaf: Arab Museum of ModernArt. QMA‟s goal of becoming a “global leader in the world of museums, art and heritage” willbe advanced in the coming years with ambitious, world-class projects, including the JeanNouvel-designed National Museum of Qatar.For further information, please visit www.qma.org.qa.About Shumon BasarShumon is a writer, Editor-at-Large at Tank magazine and contributing editor at Bidounmagazine. In London, he directs the Cultural Programme at the AA School. Recent projectsthere include Format: The Shapes of Discourse, and the audio-literary exhibition TranslatedBy (with Charles Arséne-Henry), which has toured to CCA Kitakyushu and, in 2012, goes toSALT in Istanbul. Shumon is writing a novel entitled World!World!World! set in Dubai.
4. About Art DubaiHeld under the patronage of H.H. Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai. Over the last five years, ArtDubai, the leading contemporary art fair in MENASA (Middle East/North Africa/South Asia),has become a cornerstone of the region‟s booming contemporary art community and in 2011,welcomed 20,000 visitors, including 60 international museums representatives. The sixthedition of Art Dubai takes place March 21-24, 2012, at Madinat Jumeirah, and features 75galleries from 32 countries, in addition to a new programme of artists‟ and curators‟residencies, commissioned projects and performances, the unveiling of the works by AbraajCapital Art Prize winners and the critically acclaimed Global Art Forum. Art Dubai is held inpartnership with Abraaj Capital and sponsored by Cartier. Madinat Jumeirah, on Dubai‟sbeachfront, is home to the event.For further information, please visit www.artdubai.aeAbout Art WeekThe Global Art Forum Art Dubai is part of Art Week, the umbrella initiative that includes ArtDubai (March 21-24) and Sikka Art Fair (organized by the Dubai Culture & Arts Authority, andtaking place in Al Bastakiya, March 15-25), and a range of contemporary art and designevents, major museum shows, and new gallery exhibitions and artists‟ projects, taking placeeach March. Art Week positions the Gulf as a place of artistic production and home tomultiple cultural centres.About the Dubai Culture & Arts AuthorityThe Dubai Culture & Arts Authority (Dubai Culture) was launched on March 8, 2008 by HisHighness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Vice President & Prime Ministerand Ruler of Dubai. Dubai Culture plays a critical part in achieving the vision of the DubaiStrategic Plan 2015 of establishing the city as vibrant, global Arabian metropolis that shapesculture and arts in the region and the world. The organisation has announced severalinitiatives that strengthen the historic and modern cultural fabric of DubaiJoin the conversation on Twitter with @MathafModern and use hashtag #MathafModern.twitter.com/MathafModernfacebook.com/MathafModernyoutube.com/MathafModernFor more information please visit www.mathaf.org.qa.- end -
5. For further information, please contact:Omar Chaikhouni, Qatar Museums Authority+974.4422.4608 / firstname.lastname@example.orgFederica Zuccarini, Qatar Museums Authority+974.4422.4541 / email@example.comFarah Atoui, Art Dubai+971 4 384 2009 / firstname.lastname@example.orgEileen Wallis, The Portsmouth Group+971 4 369 3575 / email@example.comAmy Walker, The Portsmouth Group+971 4 369 3575 / firstname.lastname@example.orgIbrahim Asran, The Portsmouth Group+971 4 369 3575 / Ibrahim.email@example.com