Women on Art Map in Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia has developed a vibrant arts map with a calendar full of events, eagerly anticipated by art lovers. From the beginning of the year, major events such as the “Diriyah Biennale” unfold, followed by the “Open Art Exhibition” (Desert X) and “Noor Riyadh” lighting up the cities as hubs for art exhibitions, workshops, and more. In the midst of this bustling environment, artists feel supported and compete to present their unique works, creating a distinct atmosphere that oscillates throughout the year.

Women’s Central Role

Women play a pivotal role in organizing, planning, narrating, and showcasing various art events across Saudi Arabia. They hold leadership and influential positions in the Kingdom’s major art institutions, contributing significantly to the art scene.

Spotlight on Norah Al-Dabal

Norah Al-Dabal, the Director of Art and Cultural Programs at the Royal Commission for AlUla, has swiftly made AlUla a shining city on the art map. AlUla, known for its historical significance and UNESCO-listed “Hegra,” has become a tourist destination thanks to its diverse art seasons. Al-Dabal, with over 10 years of experience in art, design, and innovation, oversees significant projects like the “Desert X AlUla” exhibition and upcoming ventures that will make AlUla a focal point for art lovers and tourists alike.

Aya Al-Bakree’s Influence

“Aya Al-Bakree, the CEO of the Diriyah Biennale Foundation, has over a decade of experience in the arts sector in Europe and Saudi Arabia. Appointed in 2019, Al-Bakree plays a crucial role in organizing significant events like the “Diriyah Biennale for Contemporary Art” and the “Biennale of Islamic Arts,” showcasing works from Saudi artists and international counterparts. Furthermore, these events have grown to become key cultural and artistic highlights in Saudi Arabia.

Farida Al Husseini: Leading Diriyah Biennale for Islamic Arts

Farida Al Husseini has been notable since joining the Diriyah Biennale Foundation in March 2021. Additionally, she now leads the Islamic Arts Biennale. With over 14 years of experience, she has significantly contributed to museum and exhibition management in Saudi Arabia.

Noof Al Munif: Illuminating Riyadh with Noor Riyadh Festival

Noor Riyadh, under Noof Al Munif’s leadership, transforms Riyadh‘s skies and buildings into mesmerizing light art. This event also blends emerging and veteran Saudi artists with international ones. It aligns with Riyadh Art’s goals to foster societal values and cultural exchange. Over 2.8 million visitors have enjoyed creations from 40 countries, spread across 40 sites, including 5 key locations.

Sarah Al Rowaita: Shaping Riyadh’s Sculptural Landscape at Tuwaiq Sculpture Symposium

Sarah Al Rowaita oversees the Tuwaiq Sculpture Symposium. This unique initiative begins its journey in Tuwaiq and extends to Riyadh’s squares. It aims to transform the city into an open-air museum. This annual event is a significant cultural exchange platform, reflecting positively on both local and international sculptors.

Dina Amin: Visionary Leader of Visual Arts at Ministry of Culture

Dina Amin heads the Visual Arts Authority at the Ministry of Culture. She supervises crucial art projects, including the Saudi Pavilion at the Venice Biennale and the Kingdom’s Photographic Prize. Moreover, her responsibilities include sector development, talent support, and intellectual property rights protection.

Reem Al Sultan: Fostering Talent at Misk Art Institute

Reem Al Sultan’s Misk Art Institute is a pivotal art scene player in Saudi Arabia. It offers education, support, and residencies to rising artists. Its annual “Masaha” residency program showcases young talents, many of whom become significant figures in the Saudi art scene.

Finally, these figures are transforming Saudi Arabia’s cultural landscape through diverse initiatives in visual and sculptural arts, fostering a vibrant creative economy.

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