His Highness Sheikh Khaled bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, member of the Executive Council and Chairman of Abu Dhabi Executive Office, has visited the Portrait of a Nation II: Beyond Narratives exhibition, being held at Manarat al Saadiyat in Abu Dhabi as part of Abu Dhabi Festival.  

During the visit, His Highness met with exhibition organisers from the Abu Dhabi Music and Arts Foundation (ADMAF) and discussed works by artists who have contributed to the dynamic growth of the UAE’s rich artistic landscape.

Her Excellency Huda Ibrahim Alkhamis-Kanoo, founder of ADMAF and artistic director of Abu Dhabi Festival, said: “Portrait of a Nation II: Beyond Narratives brings us together to witness the UAE’s boundless creative energy. Organised as part of the 2022 Abu Dhabi Festival, held under the theme Crafting the Emirates State of Mind: Creation, Innovation and Joy, the exhibition is an embodiment of the UAE’s cultural milestones. With more than 62 artists and 100 works of art, including 15 special commissions debuting for the first time, Portrait of a Nation II is an unprecedented celebration of 50 years of visual art in the emirates. It is truly inspiring to see our country’s timeless story of creativity and collaboration told by the artists who have given it life.”

The Portrait of a Nation II exhibition presents a unique collection of artworks never before displayed together, that traces the UAE’s visual art history over half a century. Represented artists include Abdul Qader Al Rais, Hassan Sharif and Hussein Sharif, Najat Makki, Mohammed Kazem, and Mohamed Ahmed Ibrahim. A dedicated section of the exhibition honours the late artist Christo and his partner Jeanne-Claude, who played a pivotal role in nurturing young artists and supporting creative talent in the UAE and beyond.

Alongside the paintings, photography, 3D installations and audio-visual works, a series of talks, workshops and performances centered around the exhibition are also taking place.