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Guidelines for Artist Applications


Mid-career artists from the Middle East, North Africa or South Asia – those that have participated in dynamic exhibitions, and produced significant bodies of work in the past 2-3 years – are invited to apply for The Abraaj Group Art Prize 2018, putting forward proposals for new, imaginative, original works that will define this point in their career.

One winner receives a $100,000 prize to create a major new commission that is revealed at Art Dubai 2018. Three shortlisted artists receive $10,000 and present work alongside the winning work in the Abraaj Group Art Prize exhibition.

During the beginning of July 2017, the guest curator, winning, and short-listed artists may be invited to Dubai to view the exhibition venue, meet the production team, and finalize all relevant documents. This will be an opportunity for the artists to discuss potential exhibition plans with the chosen guest curator.

Artist applications for the Abraaj Group Art Prize 2018 open on March 14th, 2017, and will close at midnight on June 2nd, 2017. The winning and shortlisted artists will be announced in October, 2017.

Who is eligible?

  • No age restriction
  • Originate from a country in the Middle East, North Africa, South Asia -- born, living and working in the region or at least with some part of their artistic career based in MENASA -- defined by the following countries:   Afghanistan, Algeria, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Egypt, India, Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Oman, Pakistan, Palestine, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Sri Lanka, Syria, Sudan, Tunisia, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, Yemen
  • Applications are accepted from individual artists as well as collectives
  • Mid-career artists who have participated in dynamic exhibitions and produced significant bodies of work in the past 2-3 years

Application Guidelines and Requirements

  • Proposal must be for a new, imaginative, original work that will define a new point in the artists' career
  • Applications should not be part of an ongoing project or series (A series is a work deriving from the same idea, executed in the same conceptual framework and with the same methodology)
  • Works can be of any medium.
  • Estimated weight and size, conservation, installation and de-installation guidelines are required
  • Work needs to be able to fit into crates, be stored, transported and reinstalled in a variety of venues
  • The work must be unique, and photography or video works are to be produced in an edition of 1 + 1 Artist Proof and must clearly state this in the application.
  • Provision of certificate of authenticity to The Abraaj Group
  • New work must be ready by Art Dubai in March 2018, and the preparation time should include travel and research as well as production and shipping of the works to Dubai

Ownership & Copyright

  • The IP rights of the Art Project will remain with the winning artist
  • The winning artist will license the title, copyright and interest in the Art Project to The Abraaj Group and acknowledges that The Abraaj Group will be sole owner of the Art Project
  • The Artist Proof cannot be resold. Should the opportunity arise for the Artist Proof to be loaned or exhibited, the artist must seek approval from The Abraaj Group first, and they reserve the right to decline.
  • The Abraaj Group shall be granted full reproduction rights over the Art Project to create a catalogue and publicise the works in any form of communication
  • The Abraaj Group accepts the applications in confidence, and acknowledges that the information in the proposal will not be disclosed to anyone apart from the listed Selection Committee


  • No application fee
  • $100,000 to cover: associated production costs, AV tools, shipping to and installation in Dubai, artist fee
  • All electronic equipment needed for the art project to function must be included in the budget proposal and packed with the art project for future display
  • $10,000 for each of the three shortlisted artists
  • No co-sponsors of the project will be accepted

Three Shortlisted Artists

  • If the artist is selected as a “shortlisted artist” they agree to assist the guest curator with details of their full collection of works and, where possible, with contact/venue details for any works the curator is interested in displaying.
  • The shortlisted artists will work in collaboration with the guest curator in selecting previous works that best represent them, to be displayed at Art Dubai 2018, as part of the Abraaj Group Art Prize exhibition, alongside the selected Art Project.

Materials to submit via the below online application form include:

  • Section One: Contact Details
  • Section Two: Artist Background
    • Details of qualifications, exhibition history and awards (max. 200 words)
    • Images or videos of previous work, with captions including the year of production
    • Artist Statement (max 500 words) Explain the broader context of your proposal and how it relates to your previous practice and philosophy
  • Section Three: Proposal
    • Exhibition working title for the project/work
    • Detailed proposal (max. 400 words) incl. a timeline for production (up to 6 months)
    • Option to upload up to 3 drawings / sketches / images / video accompanying proposal
    • Outline materials used in production of work
    • Estimated Dimensions
    • Estimated Weight
    • Budget
    • Reference/s


For enquiries please contact abraajprize@artdubai.ae