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Weekend escape: art with heart

Al Jazirah Al Hamra is hosting this year’s Ras Al Khaimah Fine Arts Festival (RAKFAF).

"Patience and Beauty", by Amani Al Mansoori.

Opening on Valentine’s Day with a theme of “Old Meets New” the 7th edition of RAKFAF promises to be a cultural, immersive and unique experience not to be missed. An initiative of the Al Qasimi Foundation, the popular festival will present a rich variety of works by local, regional and international artists to be explored and enjoyed, as well as an expanded programme of workshops and activities. The festival is free to the public and will run until February 28, with an extended outdoor art exhibition running until April 20th, 2019.

Perfectly embodying this year’s theme of Old Meets New the festival’s art exhibition will take place at the historic pearling village of Al Jazirah Al Hamra. This striking new location is a place close to many hearts in Ras Al Khaimah, due to the abundance of culture and history allowing visitors to gain an insight into life in the past. Al Jazirah Al Hamra Old Town will be turned into an open-air gallery, presenting large-scale contemporary photo works bringing life into the historic village.  The sculptures on view will be on exhibit at the National Museum, notable as the childhood home of His Highness Sheikh Saud bin Saqr Al Qasimi, where the festival has been held for the last few years.

More than 70 artists will be showcased this year and the festival will be an opportunity to discover and experience the work of exciting emerging and established local, regional and international talent. Among these are Amani Al Mansoori, Maryam Al Mutawa, Noora Al Shehhi, Halima Al Shehhi, Karen Knorr, Gillian Robertson and Leonardo Montoya.

The festival will offer a great deal of artistic diversity, ranging from the visual arts, to sculptures and film screenings. There will also be an engaging programme of workshops at the National Museum, giving people the chance to participate in exciting activities and to see and hear from the artists being celebrated this year.

The festival is a focal point of the flourishing Ras Al Khaimah art scene, championing local talent and introducing the community to many new and regional artists, photographers and filmmakers. RAKFAF also plays a key role in the Emirate’s wider social, cultural and economic development plans (and successes) too – and brings the community together.

With the festival’s grand opening taking place on the evening of February 14th, RAKFAF is the perfect place to spend an inspired Valentine’s Day with your loved one(s) – exploring the picturesque setting, walking through the exhibition, while enjoying the food trucks, fragrant roses and heart-shaped photo booth.

For more information please visit www.rakfinearts.ae

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