The pick of this week's art exhibitions and cultural events
Wednesday March 27
Happening Now Viyé Diba (Senegal), Mohamed Abouelnaga (Egypt) and Sonya Rademeyer (South Africa) present works that explore the diversity and strength of African culture. Until May 1. Mojo Gallery, Alserkal Avenue, Al Quoz 1 (04 347 7388).
The Dara Chronicles Emirati artist Maisoon Al Saleh’s solo show explores stories told to her as a child about the Dubai-based MV Dara passenger liner explosion on April 8 1961 in the Persian Gulf, in which 238 people died. Until May 31. The Ara Gallery, Downtown Dubai (04 454 2784).
Open Wounds This group show features the eye-opening photographs of Lebanese artists George Awde, Rhea Karam, Sirine Fattouh, Rima Maroun and Randa Mirza. Each of the artists were born after the civil war in 1975, and the photographs show how war has become part of their daily landscape. Until April 14. The Empty Quarter, Gate Village 2, Podium Level (04 323 1210).
Second International Emerging Artist Award exhibition This year the award focuses on Emirati talent and is supported by Dubai Culture & Arts Authority, in conjunction with the support of HH Sheikha Wafa Hasher Al Maktoum. The contemporary art competition is open to artists both from the UAE and internationally. The roadshow starts in Dubai, before heading off to other art galleries around the world. Until March 31. FN Designs, Alserkal Avenue, Gallery 26, Street 8, Al Quoz 1 (04 379 0490).
Shadi Habib Allah The up-and-coming Palestinian artist showed in the Art Statements programme of Art Basel last year. His first solo show at the gallery features artworks in a range of mediums, including installation, video and sculpture, and centres around a personal experience. Until May 5. Green Art Gallery, Alserkal Avenue (04 346 9305).
The Dubai Dollar Project British artist and Dubai resident Jim Wheat presents his debut exhibition, ‘The Money Collection’. Wheat uses a variety of materials, including old money, sand, resin and discarded objects, to explore the subject of money. Visitors have the chance to win US$64,000 (Dhs235,000) worth of art. Until April 3. Media One Hotel, Media City (04 427 1000).
Art After Democratism Dutch visual artist Jonas Staal’s first exhibition in the UAE explores the ways in which politics and art are related. One of his projects supports the Barclays theory that the world’s tallest skyscrapers were all constructed before an impending financial crisis. Until April 13. Traffic Gallery, 179 Umm Suqeim Road (04 347 0209).
Defaced Iranian artist Shohreh Mehran presents oil paintings depicting people with their faces covered. The artworks question the way crime is treated by the media in modern society. Until April 27. Gallery Etemad, Alserkal Avenue, Al Quoz 1 (04 346 8649).
Monir Farmanfarmaian 2004-2013 This exhibition reflects upon the past decade of the Iranian artist’s journey and features some work being displayed for the first time. Until April 19. The Third Line, Al Quoz 3 (04 341 1367).
Sharjah Biennial 11: Re:emerge Towards a New Cultural Cartography Curated by Yuko Hasegawa, this year’s must-see art biennial is inspired by the courtyard in Islamic architecture, where elements of both public and private life intertwine. Until May 13. Arts and Heritage Areas, Sharjah (06 544 4113).
A Line in the Sand A group show featuring seven young and emerging Saudi artists. Ahmed Angawi, Musaed Al-Hulis, Rashed Al-Shashai, Basma Felemban, Sara Khoja, Eyad Maghazel, and Shaweesh are pushing real and perceived boundaries and limitations set by their environment. This metaphorical exhibition explores how they are stepping over the line in the sand. Until April 21. Artspace, Gate Village 3, DIFC (04 323 0820).
Popcornographic Female Kuwaiti artist Shurooq Amin presents 15 new paintings that challenge conventional perceptions of what it is to be a woman and a Muslim in 21st-century Kuwait. Having divorced and forged a successful career as an artist, Amin addresses problems she herself has endured and survived. Until April 4. Ayyam Art Gallery, Alserkal Avenue, Al Quoz (04 323 6242).
Sublime Expression Features unique works from contemporary artists who play on the concept of ‘miniature’, a genre that involves creating pieces on an unusual and striking scale, especially paintings, engravings and sculptures. Until April 18. Mussawir Art Gallery, Al Marabea Street, opposite Al Shirawi Equipment, Al Quoz 1 (04 388 1663).
Monday April 1
Marilyn Monroe by Bert Stern This show features a number of images taken in June 1962, just six weeks before Hollywood icon Marilyn Monroe’s death. Until April 18. JAMM Art Gallery, Street 8, Warehouse 11, Building 19, close to Alserkal Avenue, Al Quoz 1 (050 228 8134).
Reza Derakshani The renowned Iranian artist’s textured canvases are inspired by his heritage and explore modern-day conceptual and philosophical ideas. A selection of his abstract paintings are on show alongside new works and specially commissioned installations. Until July 9. Salsali Private Museum, Alserkal Avenue, Al Quoz 1 (04 380 9600).
The Moving Museum – Tectonic This new independent not-for-profit organisation runs a travelling programme of contemporary art exhibitions in different cities around the world. The Dubai slot features artists including Jeremy Deller, Ali Banisadr, Michael Rakowitz, The Bruce High Quality Foundation and Eddie Peake. Until April 25. Gate Village 9, DIFC (052 836 8872).
Art of Iran This showcase of rare Iranian contemporary art features 30 artists and focuses on the emerging sense of Iranian identity that distinguishes itself from what is considered western art. Until April 11. Opera Gallery, Gate Village 3, DIFC (04 323 0909).
The Wrong Women A solo exhibition by contemporary Iranian artist Afshin Pirhashemi, who presents 12 new paintings that explore the role of women in contemporary Iranian society. His edgy artworks have a gothic almost comic-style aesthetic. Until April 25. Ayyam Gallery, DIFC (04 439 2395).