“Art unites people across borders and creates a positive energy in the community,” said H.H. Sheikh Saud, at Historic Al Jazirah Al Hamra Heritage Village
Ras Al Khaimah Fine Arts Festival’s landmark 10th edition was opened by H.H. Sheikh Saud bin Saqr Al Qasimi, Ruler of Ras Al Khaimah (RAK) on Friday night with an array of local, regional and international VIP guests invited to mark the occasion.
The annual arts festival, which is now established as one of the region’s leading cultural events, held its opening night at the historic 17th century pearling village of Al Jazirah Al Hamra against the backdrop of a dazzling fireworks display.
H.H. Sheikh Saud bin Saqr Al Qasimi said: “Art unites people across borders and brings positivity and hope to the community. In Ras Al Khaimah, one of the region’s oldest cultural destinations with a proud legacy of traditional arts, we are focused on promoting the artistic pursuits of our community.
Ras Al Khaimah Fine Arts Festival not only showcases their creativity but also provides a platform for them to engage in cultural exchange with international artists. Our patronage of the arts further underlines our values and cultural ethos to connect people, promote creativity, enrich their lives, and celebrate the spirit of harmony.”
Other VVIP attendees at the prestigious event included H.E. Noura Al Kaabi, Minister of Culture and Youth. Also taking part were diplomats from countries including the US and France.
In addition to many of the festival’s activities taking place at Al Jazirah Al Hamra – a symbolic bridge between Ras Al Khaimah’s cultural heritage and contemporary art scene – the 2022 edition once again incorporates exciting satellite exhibition sites at two of the Emirate’s most iconic locations: the public viewing deck of the UAE’s highest peak, Jebel Jais, and the Open Park on Al Marjan Island.
The outdoor exhibition of art, photography and sculpture is organized by the Sheikh Saud bin Saqr Al Qasimi Foundation for Policy Research and is presenting a diverse collection of work from over 150 artists hailing from more than 45 countries. Included as part of the festival is a vibrant program of film screenings, workshops, guided tours, and other events held across the Festival’s various locations.
Emirati artists participating this year include Yousef Al Zaabi and Abdullah Lutfi, while among the event highlights are a weekend of outdoor cinema and indoor screenings at Vox. A dedicated pet-friendly weekend for animal lovers and with an array of family activities for all ages, Ras Al Khaimah Fine Arts Festival is a weekend dedicated to celebrating the UAE’s rich culture and heritage.
Festival Director Suqrat bin Bisher, said: “We are honored to have such a prestigious line-up of artists participating with us again this year, with the talent on display reflecting how the Festival is truly becoming a destination for regional and international talent.”
This year, the Festival boasts new partnerships with the NYUAD Art Gallery, and Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, reaffirming its commitment to connecting and developing the UAE’s wider cultural community.
The U.S. Mission to the UAE, which has been a key Festival partner since 2016 through its grant program for cultivating cross-cultural understanding and supporting local talent, is providing a range of performances throughout the Festival. U.S. Consul General Meghan Gregonis said: “The U.S. Mission to the UAE is once again proud to partner with Al Qasimi Foundation at Ras Al Khaimah Fine Arts Festival. Our partnership with Al Qasimi Foundation promotes mutual understanding and cultural exchange between the United States and the UAE and enhances Ras Al Khaimah’s vibrant, creative economy.”
Ras Al Khaimah Fine Arts Festival, which runs until March 31st, is presented by Marjan and supported by additional local partners including Stevin Rock LLC, Ras Al Khaimah Economic Zone (RAKEZ), RAK Ports, RAK Tourism Development Authority, RAK Hospitality Holding, RAK Transport Authority, RAK Hospital and Vox Cinemas.
Ras Al Khaimah Fine Arts Festival is free for all to attend. For the full schedule and registration, please visit: www.rakfinearts.ae.