American artist Judy Rifka left her New York studio and set up camp here in Dubai at the beginning of the month as part of her residency at the Jean-Paul Najar Foundation in Alserkal Avenue. In that time, the artist has been creating a brand-new series of works, which will go on display as part of her exhibition Judy Rifka: RETROactive on Sunday September 18 until Thursday November 13. The showcase will also feature some of her more seminal pieces from the ’70s.
Rifka became a household name back in the ’80s. Her work ranges from paintings on plywood to videos and collages influenced by pop art, the graffiti scene and avant-garde performers. Over the years, her pieces have been displayed in museums around the world including the Museum of Modern Art in New York and the Piramide Arte Contemporanea in Florence. At the other end of the spectrum, one of her paintings appeared in an episode of Miami Vice in 1985, in the background of a murder scene.
Her work has also received critical praise. Of her single shapes on plywood, created in the ’70s, the art critic Rene Ricard said they were “among the most important paintings of the decade”.
Rifka says her Dubai show will include drawings and possibly dance. She also enlisted the help of three UAE university students. To be chosen for the apprenticeship, all they had to do was post a video on Instagram and know a little bit about carpentry. Head down to the show to see why. Free.Jean-Paul Najar Foundation, www.jpnajarfoundation.com.