Although this week is all about Art Dubai, I also felt like talking about an incredibly interesting programme by The Sharjah Art Foundation called March Meeting 2012: Working with Artists and Audiences on Commissions and Residencies. This takes place until March 19 in Dar Al Nadwa, Heritage Area, Sharjah.

I’m told the programme will be inaugurated with an Opening Address given by His Excellency the Minister of Culture, Youth and Community Development, Abdul Rahman Mohammed bin Nasser Al Owais. Over 80 notable local and international art world figures will be speaking, including: HE Omar Saif Ghobash, HE Zaki Anwar Nusseibeh, Dr Salwa Mikdadi, Head of Arts and Culture Programme at Emirates Foundation and Sultan Sooud Al Qassemi, Founder of the Barjeel Art Foundation.

Distinguished art historian and curator Salah Hassan will give the Opening Keynote. James Lingwood, Co-Director of Artangel, London, will be introducing for the first time in the UAE the commissioning work of Artangel at the March Meeting, which coincides with the Middle East premiere of 1395 Days without Red.

Ziad Antar, whose documentary photography project of the UAE coastline, Portrait of a Territory, which opened in Sharjah on March 16 and the curator of the exhibition, Christine Macel, Chief Curator at Musée National D’Art Moderne Centre Pompidou, Paris, will both be participating in the March Meeting, along with Basma Alsharif, who has a solo exhibition, Farther Than the Eye Can See opening today March 18.

Lebanese sound artist Tarek Atoui’s Revisiting Tarab, an evening of performances inspired by classical Arab music will premiere in Sharjah on March 19, will also be presenting. Additional speakers include Yuko Hasegawa (Japan), the newly appointed Curator of the next Sharjah Biennial in 2013, Jude Kelly, OBE, Artistic Director of Southbank Centre (UK) and Beatrix Ruf, Director/Curator, Kunsthalle Zurich (Switzerland).

Sheikha Hoor Al-Qasimi, President of the Sharjah Art Foundation, will give the Closing Address at the March Meeting on March 19….the question is – will I make it to any? I sure want to!

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