NEW PUBLIC ART FOR REEM CENTRAL PARK COMMISSIONED BY ALDAR AND ABU DHABI ART
Abu Dhabi, UAE - XX April 2019: Aldar Properties PJSC (Aldar), in partnership with Abu Dhabi Art (under the Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi), has commissioned a series of public artworks for the newly opened Reem Central Park as part of its ongoing efforts to enhance Abu Dhabi's urban landscape with public art at its properties across the Emirate.
Local artists Mohammed Ahmed Ibrahim and the collective of Ramin Haerizadeh, Rokni Haerizadeh and Hesam Rahmanian were commissioned to create site-specific artworks for the recently opened, one million square foot park, located on Reem Island. This latest artistic endeavor follows on from high-profile commissions such as a 600-metre mural at Al Raha Beach, and numerous other artworks within Aldar's various properties.
The artists were inspired by the park's multicultural visitors, as well as by pre-Islamic poetry, Arabic folklore, and motifs found on items from the collections of Louvre Abu Dhabi and the Etihad Museum. The new artworks now adorn 24 pillars surrounding the 2,400-square metre skate park, staircases, four playgrounds, and four bollard walls, adding numerous additional elements of interest to the popular park, which also features sports facilities and a water and light show.
"Aldar has a longstanding commitment to supporting the public's engagement with art, through the creation of conceptual landmarks and aesthetically pleasing master developments as well as through public murals and artworks," commented Talal Al Dhiyebi, Chief Executive Officer at Aldar. "We are delighted to partner with Abu Dhabi Art to commission public artworks in Reem Central Park, which supports young artists and our vision to deliver desirable destinations, enhance our urban landscape and make Abu Dhabi an even more attractive place to live and visit."
Dyala Nusseibeh, Director, Abu Dhabi Art, added, "Aldar has a visionary approach in placing public art at the centre of their development plans from the outset, signaling a commitment to investing in culture and in creating unique public spaces. The commissioned artists are some of the most important living in the UAE today, and it is really very special that Aldar has provided the public with access to their work in Reem Park. Artists are the heart of any creative community and Aldar has brought the voice of that community into the public space, through these inspiring artworks."
Reem Central Park, located in the heart of Aldar's master-planned community on Reem Island, opened to the public on National Day in 2018. Set against a stunning beachfront, Reem Central Park also houses a mosque that can host 2,000 people, a retail centre, and food outlets including 800 Degrees Pizzeria, Park House, Taqado Mexican Kitchen and Urban Seafood.
QUOTES FROM THE ARTISTS:
Mohammed Ahmed Ibrahim: "The five walls that I created for Reem Park are conceived as pages in a book, which can be read in either direction. Art is an encounter that should expand beyond the museum or gallery to become part of everyday life and welcome different perspectives. It is this important point that Reem Park speaks to; families, friends, children all come and play in the Park. They are able to read or interpret each wall in their own way. They can picnic near the walls and I hope, enjoy a story that has been created for them, the everyday public.
"I really enjoyed my time in Reem Park spent painting on these walls, as over the weeks I had a chance to encounter many of the public that use the Park. I also enjoyed working alongside Ramin, Rokni and Hesam as inevitably our works fell into conversation. I am happy to know that new audiences for art can emerge from Reem Park, from encounters that can now happen there at any time, with the works. These works are open ended conversations and it is the public, the community around the Park that can now continue these conversations in their own way."
Ramin Haerizadeh, Rokni Haerizadeh, and Hesam Rahmanian: "Whilst working on our project at Reem Skate Park, we observed people picnicking or watching their children play and considered how repetitive acts, like the act of skating, shaped public interaction with the space. We also began viewing this public space as also being, in essence, an interior or domestic one and the concept of a majlis, which is effectively a public space in the home, consequently began to take on significance.
"With these thoughts in mind, we drew on motifs that belong to interiority, for example from porcelains. Some repetitive patterns came into play, such as those inspired by the act of skateboarding. And we looked to literature like Mu'llaqatt to elicit a mood of contemplation.
"We were given a space that is culturally active. And since the invitation for this project came with a lot of artistic freedom, we decided to take our studio into the public, observe and study the diversity of it and be responsive to people's interactions."