The Abraaj Group Art Prize, now in its sixth year, will fund projects by five artists from Iran, India, Morocco, and Egypt. The works will be unveiled in an exhibition at Art Dubai 2014.
Funded by the Abraaj Group, a leading private equity investor, the Art Prize seeks to support and showcase exceptional talent emerging from the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia. It is awarded annually to five artists from the region, who are selected based on their proposals for new projects. The artworks, which receive financial and curatorial sponsorship by the Abraaj Group, are traditionally shown at Art Dubai, an annual international art fair.
“The prize affords winners the opportunity of developing ambitious projects which without the granted funds would not have been possible,” according to the Abraaj Group.
Out of a large pool of applicants from the region, five artists were chosen to participate in this sixth edition of the Art Prize: Abbas Akhavan and Kamrooz Aram from Iran, Anup Mathew Thoma from India, Bouchra Khalili from Morocco, and Basim Magdy from Egypt.
“The 2014 winners are an internationally-acclaimed and diverse group combining outstanding artistic ability with a desire to engage and champion the arts throughout the region,” reads the press release.
Underlining the annual art grant is a pursuit for projects that transcend geographic borders, while remaining entrenched in the region from which they emerge. Another curatorial commitment on the part of Abraaj is to toy around with the boundaries of mediums.
The five artists will start to work with Pakistani guest curator Nada Raza on their respective art projects, which will be unveiled in March at Art Dubai 2014.
Contemporary visual artist Basim Magdy is the fourth Egyptian to be awarded the Abraaj Group Art Prize, following Iman Issa, Wael Shawky and Hala Elkoussy.