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At the centre of our not-for-profit programme is the Art Dubai Commission, a platform that invites artists to produce site-specific works, further enhancing the cultural landscape and supporting artistic production by local and international artists. The programme has been running since 2010. Each year the programme changes in format according to the commissioned artist and overall fair plan.

    Prajakta Potnis, Still Life, diptych, pencil, acrylic, and emulsion on lanaquarelle paper, 22 x 30 inches each, 2019 – 20.

    Image courtesy of the artist and Project 88

For Art Dubai 2023, the programme is looking at bringing artists to the heart of the fair through daily performance and food-based experiences. Further supporting the fair’s mandate to bring art from the Global South to the forefront, the programme focus is on cultural production from South Asia. Artists will be using a mix of food and performances, taking visitors on a journey from Dubai, to South Asia, and back again through activating the six senses.

The commissions use performance, food practices, and design to explore themes of community, celebration, hope, and connection. These encounters will take place in a purpose-built space at the fair, and programmed to allow for plurality in both the artists that partake and the format in which each commission takes place. Ultimately these encounters will come together; unifying aspects of public interactions and communal celebrations as powerful tools to think about the world around us.

Foundation Partners



Dastaangoi is a global organization that aims to promote the diversity and richness of contemporary South Asian art, design, and culture to the world through curating stories, podcasts and products.

Dastaangoi, Inc. was founded in 2020 by Waleeya Ahmad and Amad Mian on the belief that pride in Pakistani culture and collaborative tradition of storytelling need to be revived.



Ishara Art Foundation

The Ishara Art Foundation was founded in 2019 as a non-profit organisation dedicated to presenting contemporary art of South Asia. Located in Dubai, the foundation supports emerging and established artists that champion critical dialogue and explore global interconnections.

Ishara realises its mission through exhibitions, onsite and online programmes, education initiatives and collaborations in the UAE and internationally. The foundation facilitates exchange between South Asian and international artistic networks that include museums, foundations, institutions, galleries and individuals.

The Ishara logo, a synthesis of a square and circle, is based on an ideogram by the celebrated Indian-American artist Zarina to convey the word آسمان (‘Aasman’), sky. It forms one of 36 images from ‘Home is a Foreign Place’ (1999), a work in the collection of Ishara’s Founder and Chairperson, Smita Prabhakar. Ishara signifies a gesture, a signal or a hint, and is a word common to several languages including Arabic, Persian, Hindi, Swahili and Urdu.

Ishara Art Foundation is presented in partnership with Alserkal.


Kiran Nadar Museum of Art

Established at the initiative of the avid art collector Kiran Nadar, the Kiran Nadar Museum of Art (KNMA) opened its doors to the public in January 2010, as the first private museum of art exhibiting Modern and contemporary works from India and the sub-continent. Located in the heart of New Delhi, India’s capital city, KNMA as a non-commercial, not-for-profit organisation intends to exemplify the dynamic relationship between art and culture through its exhibitions, publications, educational, and public programs.



Kochi-Muziris Biennale

Founded in 2011, Kochi-Muziris Biennale is India’s first ever biennial of international contemporary art and its story is unique to India’s current reality—its political, social and artistic landscape. It began as a government initiative, when the Department of Cultural Affairs of Government of Kerala approached two artists—Riyas Komu and Bose Krishnamachari—to help organise an international platform for art in India. The Kochi-Muziris Biennale seeks to invoke the latent cosmopolitan spirit of the modern metropolis of Kochi and its mythical past, Muziris, and create a platform that will introduce contemporary international visual art theory and practice to India, showcase and debate new Indian and international aesthetics and art experiences and enable a dialogue among artists, curators, and the public.


Samdani Art Foundation 

The Samdani Art Foundation (SAF) is a private arts trust based in Dhaka, Bangladesh founded in 2011 by collector couple Nadia and Rajeeb Samdani to support the work of the country’s contemporary artists and architects. Led by Artistic Director and Curator Diana Campbell, SAF seeks to expand the audience engaging with contemporary art across Bangladesh and increase international exposure for the country’s artists and architects. Its programmes support Bangladeshi artists and architects in broadening their creative horizons through production grants, residencies, education programs, and exhibitions. SAF produces the renowned bi-annual Dhaka Art Summit (DAS), which it founded in 2012.


Durjoy Bangladesh Foundation in collaboration with Britto Arts Trust

Durjoy Bangladesh Foundation (DBF) is a non-profit organisation established in 2018, with a mission to support and promote art from South Asia and beyond in a critical, international art context. Its Projects and Programming cultivate and present rigorous artistic and socially responsible practices through exhibitions, commissions, residencies, community engagement programmes and publications, with the aim of developing new dialogues, narratives and interconnections between home-based and diaspora South Asian artists and the international cultural community. These goals are strengthened by fruitful synergies with cross-platform cultural Partners globally, including educational and governmental institutions, museums, foundations and non-profits, art fairs and art festivals, community platforms and charities.


Britto Arts Trust is the first artists’ run non- profit collective in Bangladesh with a global reach founded in 2002 by 6 artists and permanently located at Green Road, Dhaka but works extensively in different locations across the country. Britto Arts Trust is an expansive and sustainable non- commercial contemporary art environment and culture that seeds and promotes multiple interdisciplinary practitioners, groups and networks. As a catalyst it provides a platform for the development of professional artists, a place where they can meet, discuss and upgrade their skills on their own terms.