Art at the Top Are you an Emirati artist? Want to see your work displayed in At the Top at the Burj Khalifa? Those interested should submit their portfolios before Sunday July 15. The Ara Gallery and At the Top will then choose five finalists to create an original artwork in accordance with the theme ‘what does the Burj Khalifa mean to you?’. The finalists will be announced on Thursday July 19 and will have until Thursday September 6 to create their artwork. Portfolios (under 5MB) should be sent to the email address below. Closing date July 15. firstname.lastname@example.org.
A Work of Art Emirati artists feature in this UAE-centric exhibition at Downtown Dubai’s Ara Gallery. The show celebrates the nation’s culture, heritage and traditions. Until September 1. The Ara Gallery, Burj Plaza, Downtown Dubai (04 454 2784).
Corrupted Theories French-born Algerian artist Abdelkader Benchamma presents his first solo show in the Middle East. It features a range of fine graphic sketches on paper, as well as three wooden floors that appear to have shattered like glass. Until July 15. Gallery IVDE, Alserkal Avenue, Al Quoz 1 (04 323 5052).
Follow the Leader Syrian photographer Ammar Abd Rabbo presents a body of work featuring 15 rare photographs of Arab and international leaders and dictators, including Queen Elizabeth II, Prince Charles, former Iraqi president Saddam Hussein and late Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi. Until July 12. Ayyam Gallery, Podium Level, Gate Village 3, DIFC (04 439 2395).
Summer workshops at DIAC Dubai International Art Centre holds workshops throughout the month including sculpture (Dhs630 for four sessions), oil, acrylic and watercolour painting (Dhs200 for two sessions). Call for more info, pricing and timings. Ongoing. Dubai International Art Centre, Villa 27, Street 75b, off Beach Road near Mercato Mall, Jumeirah (04 344 4398).
Original Art and Art Furniture Harmony Jomaylia Interior and Furniture has joined with Art Couture to create a unique exhibition featuring original pieces that have been turned into functional art. Until August 28. Art Couture, Al Badia Golf Club, Festival City (050 598 8206).
Urban Epidermis: A Journey of Dilapidation The works in this solo exhibition by Vikram Divecha comment on the relationship that people have with their urban surroundings, and how each affects the other. Until September 1. Traffic, 179 Umm Suqeim Road, Al Quoz (04 347 0209).
Wet Dog Contemporary Iranian artist Farzan Sadjadi presents an honest body of work that is inspired by the forgotten, lost village of Mar in the harsh climates of central Iran. Often using wet dogs as his central subjects, the duality of life is a main theme and he captures the daily struggles of an abandoned and isolated region. Until September 10. Carbon 12, Alserkal Avenue, Al Quoz (04 340 6016).
When the Lights Went Off We Saw Dubai-based photographer Sara Naim’s debut solo exhibition touches on the notions of abstract light and features enlarged images of partial photographic negatives that have been overexposed and tainted with leaked light. The images stir questions about the lost potential of photos that never were. Until October 24. The Pavilion, Emaar Boulevard, Downtown Dubai (04 447 7025).
Build The UAE B-boy and street art scene come together for an entertaining evening of urban dance and hip-hop battling to help raise awareness to construct a new art, dance and music youth centre in Gaza. Free. 7.30pm-10.30pm. Thejamjar, behind Dubai Garden Centre, Al Quoz (04 341 7303).
Islamic Design, Discovery and Vision: Owen Jones Don’t miss this rare exhibition in Sharjah. It takes inspiration from the V&A (Victoria and Albert) collection to tell the story of 19th-century architect and explorer Owen Jones, who is known to have introduced elements of Islamic design into Britain. Open Fri 4pm-8pm. Until July 15. Sharjah Museum of Islamic Civilization, Corniche Street, Al Majjarah, Sharjah (06 565 5455).
Outdoor Art Project An al-fresco exhibition launched by Dubai Culture and Dubai Properties Group, featuring the intriguing structural works of 12 UAE artists. Until September 1. The Executive Towers, Bay Avenue, Business Bay (04 515 5004).
GPP Limited Dubai photography haven Gulf Photo Plus has launched an initiative in which it displays and sells affordable photo prints by local and international artists, including Ali Alriffai, Katarina Premfors, Sara Naim, Gregory Heisler and Steve Simon. The collection is refreshed every two to three months and prints are priced from Dhs375 to Dhs2,500. Ongoing. Gulf Photo Plus, Alserkal Avenue, Al Quoz 1 (04 380 8545).
Made In Tashkeel This annual group exhibition showcases the work of local artists, Tashkeel members, workshop participants and recent exhibiting artists across a variety of mediums. Until August 30. Tashkeel, near Nad Al Sheba police station (04 336 3313).
Monitor, Issue 1 Rami Farook’s latest exhibition is a compilation of films, photos, notes, books, maps and gifts the artist and curator collected during a one-week trip to India to attend the Kochi-Muziris Biennale art festival in Kerala. Until July 21. Traffic, 179 Umm Suqeim Road, Al Quoz (04 347 0209).
Summer Photography Workshop Kill some time and learn a new skill while you’re at it. Ian Hardie is holding a series of five-day beginner and intermediate classes at Pink Pepper Photography throughout July, covering topics including composition and lighting. Classes start on Sunday July 15 and run until Thursday August 2. Dhs800. Until August 2. For more info and to register call (04 434 0437).
Text Me This exhibition features seven artists from across the region, each looking at the ways in which contemporary Middle Eastern artists incorporate text into their works. Until July 21. Lawrie Shabibi, Alserkal Avenue, Al Quoz 1 (04 346 9906).
International Radio Playwriting Competition The British Council, in collaboration with the BBC World Service, is inviting non-UK residents to write and submit a radio play of 53 minutes in length on any subject. The winners will receive Dhs11,000 and a trip to London to see their play being recorded. For further info or to apply, see the website below. Until July 31. www.bbcworldservice.com/radioplay.
Taste Binds the Tribe A group exhibition featuring the works of established Zimbabwean artist Daryl Nero and Mozambique’s late woodblock print artist Isaac Sithole. Until September 1. Unit 35, Alserkal Avenue, Street 8, Al Quoz 1 (04 379 0940).
Demolition Iranian artist Fereydoon Omidi’s homage to Persian calligraphy features delicate large-scale works that play on the beauty of the ancient art form. His works are fluid and dreamlike. Until September 10. XVA Gallery, Building 7, Gate Village, DIFC (04 358 5117).
More Café digital photo competition Want to win a digital photo course, a brunch or an afternoon tea? More Café is running a competition in which UAE residents (adults, teens and kids) are invited to submit photos that embody the theme ‘summer fun’. Get snapping and see if you can impress the judges with your creative skills. Closing date August 30. www.ductac.org/more.
This week’s theatre
Cats Andrew Lloyd Webber’s award-winning musical makes its mark on Dubai with a four-day run performed by Spotlight Academy. The cast is made up of local and international talent including Olivier award-nominated actress Alison Jiear (Let It Snow, Grease) as ageing glamour cat Grizabella. Stalls Dhs150, balcony Dhs130. 8pm. July 10-14. Centrepoint Theatre, Ductac, Mall of the Emirates (04 341 4777).