Sign the kids up for Art Dubai 2019's biggest activity

The Sheikha Manal Little Artists Program is all about creativity 

Sign the kids up for Art Dubai 2019's biggest activity
Sign the kids up for Art Dubai 2019's biggest activity  Image #2

We get excited about art and its way of helping kids express themselves in the simplest, yet most elaborate of ways possible. That’s why we’re gearing up for its biggest Dubai event of the year. One of the reasons we’re particularly psyched is that we can’t wait to see what the seventh edition of the Sheikha Manal Little Artists Program will bring.

American artist Sally Curcio will be the lead artist for the upcoming iteration Creating New Worlds, taking place at Art Dubai from March 20-23. Held under the patronage of Her Highness Sheikha Manal bint Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, President of UAE Gender Balance Council, President of Dubai Women Establishment, and wife of His Highness Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs UAE.

“The Program was set up to provide access to skills and ideas for UAE-based kids and teenagers aged five to 17 within the arts. The aim is to encourage and motivate them over the long term to excel in the artistic and creative fields,” says Pablo Del Val, artistic director of Art Dubai.

Keeping in line with this year’s theme, Curcio will invite kids and teenagers to explore and create cityscapes and urban landscapes through the use of miniatures and prototypes, allowing them to create their own imaginative utopia and see it become a reality.

“Well, Sally has been setting tiny imaginations alight with her ‘Bubble Worlds’ exhibitions for over a decade. We like the scale of the worlds they’ll be envisaging, the miniature world is inviting and unintimidating for kids. What’s more, young ones in Dubai are at an advantage, they have their own city with an incredible cityscape to draw inspiration from. It will definitely help them create their own,” adds De Val.

Materials such as coloured beads, balls, pipe cleaners, blocks, bottle caps, and other found and recycled tools will be used to create the new worlds. Utilising them to represent cityscapes of varying scales and perspectives enriches idea development and creative processes within kids, helping them work towards artistic and career aspirations.

“We aim to open young people’s minds to new possibilities, to look at the future and imagine what’s possible. We’ll be guiding kids through making their own miniatures, as well as collaborative projects that call for teamwork. These activities can motivate invention, cooperation and exploration of how different materials can be employed and composed to create newly imagined environments,” says De Val.

“So, they will learn to rethink how materials are used, and how working together can create impactful results. Perhaps, as lead artist Sally Curcio says, we’ll inspire some of these children to become future architects,” he adds.

The idea behind having kids create mini cities aims to teach them a little colour psychology. Colourful and tactile materials stimulate the creative mind and are essential in fostering cheerful, optimistic feelings towards the world.

“City and colour aside, we also focus on recycled products in the workshops, teaching kids how to create from everyday materials around them. There’s a need for some real creative collaborative and innovative thinking to manage the waste we create and we hope they’ll leave the workshop feeling inspired to create change,” explains De Val.

The full programme includes workshops at Art Dubai and discovery tours for kids and teenagers led by UAE-based and international artists. Kids and youn ones will discover key pieces from around the fair, drawing inspiration every single day. 
Dhs60 (day ticket), free (kids/teens up to 18 years old). Mar 20-23. Madinat Jumeirah, Um Suqeim, Dubai,

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