Art Dubai Modern

Art Dubai Modern presents museum-quality works by masters from the Middle East, South Asia and Africa, whose work has been influential throughout the 20th  century. Overseen by a committee of leading academics and curators—Dr. Iftikhar Dadi, Catherine David, Vali Mahlouji and Dr. Nada Shabout—the section presents galleries with both solo and collective exhibits.

Applications for Art Dubai Modern 2020 are now open. 


Should you have any questions, please email Genna Daya,


All applications are reviewed by the Advisory Committee, comprising curators and historians with a particular interest in modernist practices of the Middle East, Africa and Asia.

Dr Iftikhar Dadi
An associate professor in Cornell University’s Department of History of Art, co-director of the Institute for Comparative Modernities, and director of the South Asia Program. Dadi is the author of Modernism and the Art of Muslim South Asia and co-edited Lines of Control: Partition as a Productive Space; and Unpacking Europe: Towards a Critical Reading. He serves on the editorial advisory boards of the journals Bio-Scope: South Asian Screen Studies; Archives of Asian Art and Art Journal (2007-2011), and is advisor to the Hong Kong based Asia Art Archive.

Catherine David
French-born art historian and curator, David is Deputy Director of Musée National d’Art Moderne, Paris. She has worked at the Musée National d’Art Moderne, Centre Georges Pompidou, the Galerie Nationale du Jeu de Paume, Paris and the Witte de With Center of Contemporary Art in Rotterdam. In 1997, she was Artistic Director for documenta X in Kassel and in 1998, served as Director of Contemporary Arab Representations.

Vali Mahlouji
A London-based curator, director of the Kaveh Golestan Estate and independent advisor to the British Museum, Mahlouji is founder of the curatorial think tank Archaeology of the Final Decade (AOTFD), a non-profit organisation whose research identifies, investigates and re-circulates significant cultural and artistic materials that have remained obscure, under-exposed, endangered, banned or in some instances destroyed.

Dr Nada Shabout
A professor of Art History and the Coordinator of the Contemporary Arab and Muslim Cultural Studies Initiative (CAMCSI) at the University of North Texas, Shabout is the founding president of the Association for Modern and Contemporary Art from the Arab World, Iran and Turkey (AMCA). She has published numerous articles on modern and contemporary Arab and Iraqi art. She is the author of Modern Arab Art: Formation of Arab Aesthetics, University of Florida Press, 2007; co-editor with Salwa Mikdadi of New Vision: Arab Art in the 21stCentury, Thames & Hudson, 2009; and co-editor with A. Lenssen and S. Rogers, Modern Art in the Arab World: Primary Documents, Museum of Modern Art, New York, 2018.