The Dubai Art Week was established in 2011 upon the initiative of Art Dubai, to bring together all the diverse art events happening during Art Dubai under one umbrella. The schedule of events includes those happening in neighboring Sharjah and Abu Dhabi, and even Doha. The Dubai Art Week takes place every year around the Spring Equinox (March 19-22), i.e. the third week of March, and usually lasts almost two weeks. In 2013 it included:
- The 6th annual Sharjah March Meeting (March 13-17)
- Opening week of the 11th Sharjah Biennial (March 13-17)
- The 3rd Sikka Art Fair (2013 dates to be announced, will start around March 15)
- The 7th Global Art Forum (in Doha March 17-18 and Dubai March 20-22)
- Opening nights of galleries in Alserkal Avenue and DIFC (probably March 18 & 19)
- The second edition of Design Days Dubai (March 18-21)
- The unveiling of the 5th Abraaj Capital Art Prize (March 20)
- Art Dubai (March 20-23)
In addition the following venues usually organize events:
- The Maraya Art Center and the Barjeel Foundation in Sharjah
- The Abu Dhabi Festival by the Abu Dhabi Music and Arts Foundation
- Private galleries in Dubai and Abu Dhabi
In fact the entire regional art world braces for the sudden influx of art professionals and aficionados from the whole world – to give an indication, 70 museum groups visited Art Dubai in 2012, and they went to see as many side events as possible.
Visitors to Art Dubai that receive collector’s circle or VIP invitations are encouraged to visit as many venues as possible before and during Art Dubai, including lunches, private parties and ‘by invitation only’ visits. One can make one’s program online from the various options offered after being registered as such a guest. For the ‘commoner’ visiting Dubai during this week ArtintheCity‘s ArtBus provides a similar service, linking many of the events and venues together under the supervision of their guides.
- The Arab Fund for Arts and Culture – Open Calls as of March 2015
- Some of the first favourites at Art Dubai.
- Sheikha Hoor Al-Qasimi to be the curator of the UAE Venice Biennale 2015 pavillion
- First edition of the Gulf Music Festival at the Archive, Dubai
- And an interesting question mark from Isabelle van den Eynde