Alserkal Residency was created as a platform for artistic experimentation and discursive exchange, seeking to support cultural producers as they research themes pertinent to their respective practices, in the city of Dubai. The programme is designed to be immersive and engage the local interdisciplinary community through a series of public events and conversations. Founded by Abdelmonem Bin Eisa Alserkal and the Alserkal family, the Residency focuses on research-based and socially-engaged practices.
To support cultural practitioners through a process of exploration, experimentation, and research, and to foster an interdisciplinary community engaged with the cultural landscape of the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia.
Split into three cycles – Spring, Summer and Fall – via a combination of open calls and solicited proposals, Alserkal Residency is open to emerging and mid-career artists, as well as curators, writers, and researchers working in related fields. We encourage application proposals that reflect, in a broad sense, an interest in the regional context.
The primary focus of the Residency is to foster an exploration of ideas. While there is no production requirement, residents are expected to take part in a dynamic public programme that engages local and regional audiences, establishing dialogue with both their peers and the UAE community.
Based in a new 6,000 sq. foot warehouse space located in the heart of Alserkal Avenue, designed by UAE-based architectural collective ‘a hypothetical office’, each cycle can accommodate up to six residents.
Amanda Abi Khalil
An independent curator currently based in Beirut, Amanda has focused her curatorial projects on socially engaged practices and exhibitions that critically address modes of production and exhibition in the art world today. She is the founder of Temporary Art Platform, a curatorial platform that aims to shift artistic and curatorial discourse towards social and contextual concerns in Lebanon through residencies, research projects and commissions. Abi Khalil lectures in curating and sociology of arts at the American University of Beirut (AUB) the Lebanese Academy of Fine Arts (ALBA) and the Saint Joseph University (USJ) in Beirut.
Diana Campbell Betancourt
As Artistic Director of Dhaka-based Samdani Art Foundation and Chief Curator of the Dhaka Art Summit, Diana Campbell Betancourt has developed the Dhaka Art Summit to be the world’s leading research and exhibitions platform for art from South Asia, bringing together artists, architects, curators, and writers from across South Asia through a largely commission based model where new work and exhibitions are born in Bangladesh.
In addition to her exhibitions making practice, Betancourt also is responsible for developing the Samdani Art Foundation collection. She has consulted the New Museum and MCA Chicago and many other leading institutions on their inclusion of South Asia in their exhibitions programs and has presented her research as part of MoMA’s C-MAP initiative. She is a nominee for the 2016 Independent Curators International Independent Vision Curatorial Award and a part of MoMA’s 2016 International Curatorial Institute.
Since 2012, Luigi Fassi has been visual arts curator at the steirischer herbst festival in Graz, Austria. He has curated exhibitions for different institutions internationally, including Kunsthalle Helsinki, Finland; Konstmuseum, Malmö, Sweden; Museo Marino Marini, Florence, Italy; GAM-Galleria d'Arte Moderna e Contemporanea, Turin, Italy; Pori Art Museum, Pori, Finland; ISCP, New York, US; Prague Biennale, Prague, Czech Republic. A Helena Rubinstein Curatorial
Fellow at the Whitney Museum ISP in New York in 2008, he was director of the ar/ge kunst Kunstverein in Bolzano (2009–12). He is a contributor to Mousse Magazine and Camera Austria and has been commissioned different texts for catalogues and books for Alfredo Jaar, Danh Vo, Roman Ondak, João Maria Gusmão + Pedro Paiva, Diango Hernandéz, and others. In 2016 he has been a fellow of the Artis Research Trip Program in Tel Aviv and curator of the XVI Quadriennale in Rome, Italy. In 2017 he is a nominator to the Prince Claus Award in Amsterdam, Netherlands.
Vassilis Oikonomopoulos is Assistant Curator, Collections International Art at Tate Modern, London. He is responsible for acquisitions, working closely with Tate’s Middle East and North Africa Acquisitions Committee. Vassilis has organised the Hyundai Commission Anywhen with French artist Philippe Parreno at Tate Modern’s Turbine Hall. Previously he has co-curated the exhibition Alexander Calder: Performing Sculpture. He is currently working on the retrospective exhibition of Fahrelnissa Zeid, which is set to open at Tate Modern in June 2017. His work appears in journals, books and online publications regularly.
Uzma Z. Rizvi is Associate Professor of Anthropology and Urban Studies at the Pratt Institute of Art and Design, Brooklyn, NY, and Visiting Researcher in the Department of International Studies at the American University of Sharjah, UAE. Rizvi has been a lead tutor (w/ Murtaza Vali) of Art Dubai’s seminar program, Campus Art Dubai (CAD) since 2014 and directed (w/ Amal Khalaf) Art Dubai’s 2016 Global Art Forum (GAF), The Future Was. Her writing can be found in The New Inquiry and LEAP. Recent academic publications include ‘Decolonization as Care’ (2016); ‘Crafting Resonance: Empathy and Belonging in Ancient Rajasthan’ (2015); ‘Decolonizing Archaeology: On the Global Heritage of Epistemic Laziness,’ (2015); and The World Archaeological Congress Research Handbook on Postcolonial Archaeology (2010).
Aquamarina holds a B.A. in Philosophy and Classics from the University of Kent and an M.A. in Contemporary Art from the Sotheby’s Institute of Art London, where she specialised in Contemporary Middle Eastern Art. Her knowledge of the MENASA region’s artistic landscape further developed while she was Associate Director at Green Art Gallery, Dubai. Prior to her return to the UAE, Aquamarina was Artist Liaison at Carroll/Fletcher Gallery in London. Presently, Aquamarina is spearheading the development of Alserkal Residency alongside managing a prolific year-round homegrown programme.
Spring and Fall cycles: Solicited proposals
For the Spring and Fall cycles, the Residency Director and the bi-annual, rotating Selection Committee will nominate artists and cultural practitioners to apply. The Selection Committee consists of leading international scholars, curators, and writers.
Spring Cycle dates
1 February – 1 April
Applications via solicited proposal
Fall Cycle dates
1 October – 1 December
Applications via solicited proposal
Summer Cycle: Open call
The Summer Cycle runs from 1 June - 31 July 2018 and is dedicated to cultural practitioners who are currently citizens of or resident in the GCC, including artists, curators, writers and researchers. Applications are being accepted from 6pm on 15 August 2017 until 6pm on 30 December 2017.
Applications can only be made via this website.
The Residency provides:
- Return flights from the resident’s home city to Dubai
- Single-room accommodation, in a shared space with up to five other residents
- Monthly living stipend
- Production stipend
- Programming stipend
- 24-hour access to an individual studio at Alserkal Avenue
- Support from Alserkal Residency team
- Introductions, mentorship and critiques from international and local professionals, who are part of Alserkal Avenue’s network of peers