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Major Exhibition of Islamic Art set to Enliven Vibrant Singaporean Cultural Scene


 

Singapore has reinforced its position as an influential global art hub with the announcement it is to host a major exhibition of Islamic Art, and work continuing apace on a modernized National Art Gallery.

Treasures of the Aga Khan Museum: Architecture in Islamic Arts, features key works from a formidable collection owned by HH Prince Karim Aga Khan IV.

Running from July 20 to October 14 2012, the hotly-anticipated exhibition spans a period of over 1,000 years and celebrates the stunning architectural traditions of the Islamic world. It will comprise more than 100 pieces from countries like Iran, India, Turkey, Syria, Spain and Egypt as expressed through mediums such as painting, metal-works, sculpture and ceramics.

Singapore Tourism Board (STB) is also actively working with a host of Middle Eastern artists and collectors to stage another major exhibition in May 2013. 

“Singapore is hugely receptive to Middle Eastern art, so we are very excited to welcome such a landmark exhibition,” said Dubai-based Mohammed Hafez Marican, Area Director Middle East and Africa, STB. 

“Underpinned by a thriving community of artists, collectors, galleries, and students, this is a country truly intent on establishing itself as major player on the global art scene.” 

Interest in Islamic art is on the rise, as evinced Christies London recently reporting record sales of over £30 million in this emergent category, including the world record auction for a single artwork. 

“The results of our auctions at both King Street and South Kensington illustrate the continuing demand across the entire market for works of art from the Islamic world,” said William Robinson, Director and Head of Islamic Art, Christie’s London. 

Singapore is regarded as particularly well-placed to raise the profile of Middle Eastern art, not least for its ability to connect with a burgeoning Far Eastern market that has been significantly boosted in recent years by a new breed of wealthy Chinese collectors. 

A significant component of Singapore’s overall cultural strategy is the 2015 opening of the modernized National Art Gallery, which will feature headline-grabbing exhibitions set to cast an illuminating spotlight on the region’s social, economic and political history, as well as drive awareness-raising outreach programs and a research division focusing on Southeast Asian and Singaporean art. 

“The National Gallery will look beyond national and regional boundaries of art and take on a wider ambit of international visual arts culture, conduct research into our Asian heritage and cultural affiliations, and engage with global cultures and discourses,” added Hafez. 

A cosmopolitan East-meets-West city, Singapore’s arts calendar facilitates and promotes myriad events that appeal to people from all walks of life, including Singapore International Festival for Children, Womad and the Singapore Arts Festival.

As a key organiser for all art events within Singapore, The National Arts Council is responsible for delivering the Singapore Arts Festival, a leading international arts festival in the region. 

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