After all these years, I finally meet my love, Osan – who is responsible for gifting the world with this amazing book. She is the sole reason I went to Sikka. I mean, of course I’m there for the art, but Osan is a work of art – I love her so much and look up to her in so many ways.
The setting of Sikka could not be any more perfect (couldn’t be more perfect for our first meeting, too!) for an Art Fair. Osan and Cholo told us that prominent families used to live in these buildings, at this now historical neighborhood / part of Al Fahidi. Like so many art museums and galleries, the set up in itself is an art form, and Sikka’s is so uniquely done. I wish we spent more time to see everything, but we went on a Weekday, and we all know what the metro’s like bound to Rashidiya starting at 5:30 PM., it just didn’t give us a lot of time to explore. Boo.
There is so much stigma when it comes to Middle Eastern Culture, which makes any form of art produced by Arabs, extra, extra special. They allow you to see into who they really are, beyond everything else that was presented FOR them by the World. You don’t know them like we do. And even for someone who grew up around them, they still surprise me (in many good ways).
Growing up in the Middle East, you know this place and its people will take up so much of my heart (and soul), and I wish there was more I could do to make them less misunderstood.
Here are photos I managed to take (and photos Drew managed to take of me, lelz) :
According to Drew, they sold pretty legit Burgers here.
Growing up in Saudi Arabia in the late 90’s definitely made me relate to this so much.
The Al Amal “HOPE” exhibit. Definitely one of my favorites. These are all handwritten notes by former patients of the Al Amal psychiatric hospital. Brilliantly curated.
If this doesn’t give you goosebumps …
Old door, paintings, signages, from the now demolished Al Amal Hospital.
I stared at this brick for a good 5 minutes, thinking of the things it witnessed …pain, hope, everything that makes us all human.
“The Power” by artist Aisha Alabbar. In a text describing this exhibit, she writes, “They say Women will always have a ceiling, controlling their progress. I say no ceiling will ever be strong enough to hold us down. We empower force, we rise with time, and we face pressure”.
Art in every nook and cranny
At the XVA Cafe and Gallery, where Cholo and Osan treated us to Dinner. Yum, THALIIIII.
This baby sat with us all throughout Dinner. I’m pretty sure it owns this chair.
After this photo was taken, I find out Cholo was one of the Star Trek Beyond extras … *jaw drop*
Here she is, in the flesh, F I N A L L Y.
Post-dinner because we were so forking hungry. Can’t wait to eat out with you both again!
To find out more about this year’s program, head here – it’ll give you an idea of the great things to come for next year’s (Sikka) Art Fair Will definitely do my best to come on a Weekend and see each house!