CFP: Imagining Art Futures – Collection and Exhibition Strategies in the Gulf Region (Loughborough University, United Kingdom / online, 4-5 May 2023)

This two-day, international symposium examines recent developments in the art landscape of the Gulf countries. Debating conceptions of ‘Gulf Art’, ‘petro-culture’, and ‘Arab futurism’, we seek to test ideas and terminologies currently being used to analyze art production, collection, and exhibition in the region. We welcome discussion about the ways in which artists, curators, art professionals, and policy makers from Gulf countries are creating new audiences and opening local art production and collecting institutions onto international platforms.

We are keen to explore the role of museums and art markets in the dissemination of knowledge about artists and cultural heritage. Key questions include, but are not limited to, the following:

– What are the challenges and opportunities facing artists in the Gulf region as they develop international careers?

– What is the impact of regional and international partnerships between art institutions?

– Do recent initiatives in the Gulf region suggest innovative models for museology?

– How are art prizes, biennials, and art fairs shaping conceptions of contemporary art from the region?

– What new educational and institutional frameworks are developing within Gulf countries for art and its curation?

– What art futures are being imagined and what are the proposed mechanisms for their realization?

Proposals for presentations (20 minutes) should be sent to Kathryn Brown ( by no later than 10 February 2023. Proposals should contain an abstract (max 300 words) and a short biographical note (max 150 words). Please indicate if you would like to participate in person or to give an online presentation

Organizers: Kathryn Brown and Ghadeer Ghazi Abualshamat.

This symposium is kindly supported by the Barjeel Art Foundation.