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Workshop gives young artists the opportunity to create artworks inspired by the natural environment of the UAE

Creating artworks inspired by the natural habitat of the UAE 19th May 2016

Abu Dhabi Music & Arts Foundation celebrates International Museum Day with pioneering land artist Mohammed Ahmed Ibrahim

In celebration of International Museum Day 2016, yesterday the Abu Dhabi Music & Arts Foundation (ADMAF) ran a visual arts workshop for students led by Emirati land artist Mohammed Ahmed Ibrahim. Following this year’s theme, ‘Museums and Cultural Landscapes’, the workshop was held at the University of Sharjah, where students were asked to collect items from their natural surroundings such as rocks, leaves and other organic materials which they presented to the artist before creating artworks inspired by the natural habitat of the UAE.

This year saw the 38th edition of International Museum Day, an initiative organised by the International Council of Museums (ICOM) which brings together museums across five continents to raise awareness of the importance museums play in the development of the society. In 2015, more than 35,000 museums participated in the event in some 145 countries, to tell the world that they are an important means of cultural exchange, enriching cultures and developing cooperation and peace.

During the workshop Mohammed Ahmed Ibrahim spoke about the inspiration he draws from the UAE landscape, he said: “When you take solitary walks among the rocks on bare mountains, collecting the dry branches that have fallen from small trees, following traces of desert animals, sensing the humming of insects… At this moment you are overcome with the feeling of being at one with nature, so you begin to shed your layers, piece by piece, and commence with creating an artwork.”

Commenting on International Museum Day 2016, H.E. Hoda Al Khamis-Kanoo, Founder of the Abu Dhabi Music & Arts Foundation said: “Year after year, we relish the chance to engage the people of the UAE in marking International Museum Day. Having held a number of exhibitions and workshops in previous years, we were delighted to welcome Mohammed Ahmed Ibrahim, one of the UAE’s most beloved artists, to host a young artists workshop on land art this year. It is important that we participate in global initiatives such as this to help educate young people on the importance of art and the unity of the global cultural community.”