On Show in Dubai this Month

This fall, Dubai welcomes a diverse array of exhibitions, showcasing talent from around the world. In this article, we will be exploring some of the many shows on display. From the digital landscapes of Josh Rowell’s “Moral Codes” at Firetti Contemporary to the thought-provoking works of Karolina Krasouli’s “Arodo” at Grey Noise, and the exploration of memory and culture in “Memory Is The Seamstress” at Green Art Gallery, Dubai’s art enthusiasts are in for a treat. Additionally, the dynamic collaboration of Olaf Breuning and Edgar Orlaineta in “Yours Or Mine?” at Carbon 12 promises an exciting artistic dialogue.


Arodo by Karolina Krasouli, Grey Noise

Karolina Krasouli, Moonflower 2023, Gesso, dust pigment and graphite on canvas 134 x 30 cm. Images courtesy of the artist and Grey Noise, Dubai

Karolina Krasouli presents a collection encompassing paintings, drawings, sketches, and photographs, both new and old. Her artistic exploration delves into the convergence of abstraction and figuration across various mediums—painting, photography, and film. She engages in a process of reading and writing, extracting operations for reinterpreting meanings and sensations, aiming to forge a unique language. At the core of her artistry lies the endeavour to blend diverse fragments, influenced by her assortment of books, papers, and envelopes, both in form and concept. Krasouli represents optical phenomena linked to memory and language, employing colour and light to supplant written and spoken words, fostering alternative modes of expression. These creations emerge from a meditative process, characterised by repetition and temporal immersion, often detached from recognisable physical references. Viewers encounter them as visual fields, inviting an ever-evolving interplay between proximity and distance. The exhibition “Arodo” borrowing its name from a nautical term signifying a ship’s temporary halt outside a port during inclement weather, embodies moments of stillness, contemplation, and the inexorable passage of time that inhabit Krasouli’s works.

Location: Grey Noise, Dubai

Dates: September 18 – November 7, 2023


Memory Is The Seamstress Curated By Murtaza Vali, Artworks By Hangama Amiri, Cian Dayrit, Melissa Joseph, Lebohang Kganye, Jagdeep Raina And Raed Yassin, Green Art Gallery

Raed Yassin, Dad Smoking, 2013 Silk thread embroidery on embroidered silk cloth, 100 x 80 cm, Image courtesy of Green Art Gallery and the artist

In her renowned novel “Orlando: A Biography,” Virginia Woolf used textile work as a symbol for memory’s enigmatic processes, highlighting its capacity to weave the fragments of daily life into a narrative fabric, sometimes cohesive, sometimes disjointed. The connection between memory and textiles has evolved with photography, which facilitates recording experiences while weakening our innate memory. This exhibition features diverse textile artists employing various techniques, from applique to embroidery, translating photography into fabric, offering distinct material and imagery possibilities. It juxtaposes artists exploring personal histories with those delving into colonial legacies. Each artist engages memory, commemorating and critiquing, transforming photographs into textured narratives that soften the rigid nature of photographic records into nuanced impressions. “Memory is the Seamstress” is the inaugural exhibition in a series curated by Murtaza Vali, showcasing contemporary textile and fibre art at Green Art Gallery.


Location: Green Art Gallery

Dates: September 18 – November 3, 2023


Yours Or Mine? By Olaf Breuning & Edgar Orlaineta, Carbon 12

Edgar Orlaineta, Town below the Mountain, 2020, Acrylic, lacquer, color pencil and wood on MDF board., 40 x 30 x 6.5 cm, 15 3/4 x 11 3/4 x 2 1/2 in. Image courtesy of Carbon 12 and the artist

Edgar Orlaineta and Olaf Breuning embrace naturalism and material languages in their artistry, crafting a compelling narrative of hybridity and environmental awareness. Breuning’s woodcut paintings serve as poignant reminders of the fragile equilibrium between nature’s beauty and human-induced climate change. Meanwhile, Orlaineta’s sculptural forms, shaped by biomorphic designs and post-war aesthetics, prompt introspection into the contemplative process of handmade creations.

Orlaineta’s work delves into the intersection of sculpture and design, anchored in themes of humour and craftsmanship. He challenges the conventional seriousness of art, viewing humour and craftsmanship as profound in their whimsy, constituting a vital part of his artistic commitment. Craftsmanship becomes a conduit for material transformation, where hands extend the intellect, bridging ideas to tangible forms. Orlaineta’s sculptures offer reflections on the meditative essence of handmade processes, facilitating contemplation and a connection between thought and craft, diverging from today’s frenetic pace.

Humour becomes Orlaineta’s form of rebellion, a critical, transparent, and vulnerable aspect of his practice. Similarly, Olaf Breuning employs provocative yet playful imagery, urging viewers to confront their environmental impact. By simplifying complex environmental issues, he highlights the consequences of human actions on the planet. Breuning’s choice of materials, including naturally fallen tree trunks, underscores the nexus between human activities and resource depletion.

Breuning’s woodcut paintings feature recurring motifs like clouds, raindrops, and fire, simplifying the message and making it universally accessible. The works not only discuss nature but also prompt viewers to reconsider their relationship with it—how we harness, manipulate, and are influenced by it. Through this simplification, Breuning underscores the stark contrast between nature’s beauty and the harsh realities of climate change due to human evolution.

Both artists approach materials differently, yet their convergence symbolises a fusion of diverse artistic ideas and concepts, inviting viewers to ponder the interplay between design, nature, and sustainability. As their practices intertwine, viewers explore the interconnectedness of human existence with the natural world, reflecting on the environmental repercussions of our actions while celebrating the expressive potential of materials and the allure of hybrid artistic expressions.

Location: Carbon 12

Dates: September 18 – November 14, 2023


Moral Codes by Josh Rowell, Firetti Contemporary

Firetti Contemporary presents ‘Moral Codes’, the debut solo exhibition of Josh Rowell in the Middle East, curated by Celine Azem. It showcases Rowell’s notable series like “Painting Language,” “Virtually Fragile,” and “Mosaics,” delving into ethics, communication, and the evolving digital sphere. The core of the exhibition features Rowell’s “Painting Language,” inspired by Aesop’s fables, echoing timeless moral lessons. Rowell’s intricate hand-painted texts blend art, technology, and language, blurring digital and tangible boundaries, and emphasising the handmade in our digital age.

“Virtually Fragile” captures the moment digital connectivity fails, highlighting our dependence on the virtual realm. “Mosaics” explores the fleeting nature of online comments, reminiscent of comment memes. ‘Moral Codes’ prompts reflection on ethics, connectivity, and our digital existence, challenging societal moral values. Rowell invites viewers to delve into these profound themes and question the codes governing our lives.

Location: Firetti Contemporary

Dates: September 7 – November 7, 2023

JOSH ROWELL, VIRTUALLY FRAGILE #10, 2019. Image courtesy of Firetti Contemporary and the artist



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