Alserkal announces Quoz Arts Fest 2020 programme

Alserkal announces Quoz Arts Fest 2020 programme

Organised by Alserkal 
24 & 25 January 2020
Al Quoz

Free and open to the public

Dubai, UAE — The creative industrial neighbourhood of Al Quoz will celebrate the 8th edition of Quoz Arts Fest on 24 and 25 January 2020. Organised by Alserkal, the two-day festival is the Middle East’s biggest annual arts and culture festival, and is led by more than 60 thinkers and makers from the music, art, design, and performance realms in the UAE and beyond. The festival is free and open to the public.

Quoz Arts Fest showcases the breadth and depth of creativity across the arts that can be found in Al Quoz, with a two-day celebration of art exhibitions, live music, contemporary dance performances, food trucks, outdoor art installations, and film screenings, among other activities for a wide range of audiences, including families.

Highlights from Quoz Arts Fest 2020 include a free concert by Jordanian-Palestinian shamstep band 47Soul; the exhibition New National Dish: UAE; contemporary dance performances by London-based performance art festival Block Universe; film screenings as part of the Reel Palestine Film Festival, and much more.

Regional band 47Soul will take the stage in Alserkal Avenue, on Friday, January 24 at 8PM. The Jordanian-Palestinian band combines traditional dabke music with electronic beats, and is best-known for creating the Shamstep, a combination of mijwiz (a levantine folk musical style) and dubstep.

Block Universe, London’s leading international performance art festival and commissioning body, will present performances by Egle Budvytyte, Alex Miritziu, and Himali Singh Soin across the weekend in and around Concrete, the OMA-designed building shortlisted for the 2019 Aga Khan Award for Architecture.

New National Dish: UAE by Center for Genomic Gastronomy, will open on January 24 in Warehouse 48 in Alserkal Avenue. In this forecasting piece, the Center for Genomic Gastronomy imagines the elements of a new national dish for the UAE based on the principle concept that eaters shape the Earth through the foods and stories we celebrate, cultivate, and propagate. The exhibition, produced by Alserkal and inspired by FOOD: Bigger than the Plate at the V&A, has been generously supported by the British Council, DCMS and GREAT through the UK-Gulf Culture and Sport programme. Waseem Kotoub, Senior Programme Manager, Culture and Sport Programme, British Council Gulf says: “UK-Gulf Exhibition Programme aims to build cultural bridges and create opportunities for museums and galleries in both the UK and the Gulf. We hope that this programme will develop strong relationships and leave a lasting legacy.”

Other highlights from the Quoz Arts Fest 2020 programme include:

Ansafa contemporary dance performance by Sima Dance Company, choreographed by acclaimed Palestinian choreographer Alaa Krimed, which explores questions and concepts facing the Arab World. The performance will take place on 24 January;

The Reel Palestine Film Festival, which returns for its sixth edition, in collaboration with Cinema Akil, the GCC’s first arthouse cinema whose flagship home is presented in partnership with Alserkal Avenue. For its closing on 25 January, the festival will present two free outdoor screenings: Ambience (2019) by director Wisam Al Jafri, and Hurdle (2019), by director Michael Rowley;

Exchanges, an artist takeover by Sara Naim, featuring 15 ‘stations’ in Alserkal Avenue inviting passers-by to ask or answer questions;

New exhibitions at Alserkal Avenue’s contemporary art galleries, including a solo show by Athier at Ayyam Gallery; Towards Opacity by Vikram Divecha at Gallery Isabelle van den Eynde; Olaf Breuning’s Brainswashed by Nature at Carbon 12; and Such a Morning, a solo exhibition by Anwar Kanwar at Ishara Art Foundation, among others.

Africa & the other 54 countries: Focus on South Africa, an exhibition of art, culture, and cuisine from South Africa by African contemporary art gallery Akka Project;

The Short+Sweet Theatre festival at The Junction, the world’s largest 10-minute play festival;

First Pitch, an exhibition by American University of Sharjah (AUS) CAAD students, who will showcase the results of a semester working on design concepts for Quoz Arts Fest;

A series of talks in collaboration with Nuqat, focused on the creative economy, and drawing from the findings of 11 exploratory sessions across the region;

The Good Vibes Market street food market, with vendors including 1004, 21 Grams, Mama’esh, and Moylo’s Burger;

Live music throughout the weekend with Amina Bensouda, the Najmaat Trio, sets by DJ Sara, Muhaisahfour 4, DJ e-LO, and Satwa 3000 among others;

Boxing demos and classes with Round 10 Boxing, a STRETCH class with Crank in the Yard, and an outdoor Vinyasa yoga session with Shimis Yoga;

Children’s tours and workshops with thejamjar, The Happy Studio, and Wisdom Warehouse.

Follow @alserkalavenue @quozartsfest on Instagram for updates on #quozartsfest2020 #findyouralquoz

Press enquiries: Rania Habib,, T +971 50 100 1105



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About Quoz Arts Fest
Organised by Alserkal, Quoz Arts Fest is an annual celebration of art and culture that has been held since 2012. The festival takes place in Alserkal Avenue and across the surrounding Al Quoz, and celebrates the thinkers and makers from this creative neighbourhood. Free and open to the public, Quoz Arts Fest includes activities for all ages, including exhibitions, art installations, talks, workshops, performances, music, and more.

About Alserkal
Founded by Emirati businessman and patron, Abdelmonem Bin Eisa Alserkal, in 2007, Alserkal is a socially responsible cultural enterprise, which is deeply engaged with the arts locally, regionally and internationally. Through Alserkal Avenue, its renowned cultural district of contemporary art galleries, non-profit organisations and homegrown businesses, Alserkal has cultivated a creative economy in Dubai, supporting cultural production and spearheading disruptive business models, including the OMA-designed Concrete, a state-of-the-art exhibitions and alternative space. In addition, Alserkal supports public art commissions, residencies, research grants and educational programmes through its non-profit, Alserkal Arts Foundation.

About the UK-Gulf Exhibition Programme
The UK-Gulf exhibition programme was set up by the UK government’s Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS) and the British Council in 2017. The £1 million fund supports UK museums and cultural institutions who want to collaborate with new partners in the Gulf in order to share the most exciting UK arts and culture exhibitions with audiences in Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Kuwait, Oman, and Bahrain. Through this programme the British Council is supporting the following collaborations between UK institutions in London and Inverness with Gulf institutions in Abu Dhabi, Bahrain, Dubai, Kuwait, Oman, Saudi Arabia and Sharjah. International exhibitions provide a great opportunity for learning and cultural exchange, and each exhibition will be accompanied by an education and outreach programme that will benefit students, artists and the interested public. This project also aims to create new connections between the museum sector in the UK and the Gulf, in order to support the continued exchange of arts, culture and heritage exhibitions between the UK and Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Kuwait, Oman, and Bahrain.

About the British Council
The British Council is the UK’s international organisation for cultural relations and educational opportunities. We work with over 100 countries in the fields of arts and culture, English language, education and civil society. Last year we reached over 80 million people directly and 791 million people overall including online, broadcasts and publications. We make a positive contribution to the countries we work with – changing lives by creating opportunities, building connections and engendering trust. Founded in 1934 we are a UK charity governed by Royal Charter and a UK public body. We receive a 15 per cent core funding grant from the UK government.

About the V&A
The Victoria and Albert Museum, London (V&A) is the world’s leading museum of art, design and performance with collections unrivalled in their scope and diversity, spanning 5000 years of human creativity. It was established in 1852 to make works of art available to all and to inspire British designers and manufacturers. Today, its purpose is to champion creative industry, inspire the next generation, and spark everyone’s imagination. 

About Center for Genomic Gastronomy
The Center for Genomic Gastronomy is an artist-led think tank that examines the biotechnologies and biodiversity of human food systems. Their mission is to map food controversies, prototype alternative culinary futures and imagine a more just, biodiverse & beautiful food system. Launched in 2010 by Cathrine Kramer (NO) and Zack Denfeld (US), the Center presents its research on the organisms and environments manipulated by human food cultures in the form of public lectures, research publications, meals and exhibitions. They have conducted research in Europe, Asia, and North America, collaborating with scientists, chefs, hackers and farmers. The Center’s work has been published in WIRED, We Make Money Not Art, Science, Nature and Gastronomica and exhibited at the World Health Organization, Kew Gardens, Science Gallery Dublin and others.