MEI Art Gallery Now Open for Timed Visits

The MEI Art Gallery is now accepting in-person appointments to view its current exhibition. Please note that we are limiting occupancy to no more than eight visitors in the Gallery at a time.

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Between the Sky and the Earth: Contemporary Art from the UAE

Dec. 3, 2021 - Mar. 31, 2022


Marking the 50th anniversary of the founding of the United Arab Emirates, Between the Sky and the Earth: Contemporary Art from the UAE brings together 12 artists reflecting the diverse contemporary art ecosystem in the UAE today. With roots in the Gulf, the Levant, Southeast Asia, and the United States, the artists — all of whom now call the UAE home — challenge standard narratives about the Emirates through an intergenerational dialogue exploring their social, cultural, and natural landscapes.

Through works focusing on subjects like the environment, consumerism, and the impact of rapid urbanization, the featured artists explore themes of permanence and transience, time and memory. In the process, they offer a sample of the multi-faceted community of practitioners contributing to the UAE’s dynamic cultural output on the occasion of its Golden Jubilee — the community that shares the space Between the Sky and the Earth.

The exhibition is curated by Munira Al Sayeh and has been organized in partnership with The NYU Abu Dhabi Art Gallery, with special thanks to the Embassy of the United Arab Emirates in Washington, D.C.

We are accepting appointments to visit this exhibition in person starting from December 6.

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Photo: The Day We Met Thomas (Diptych), 2021, Hashel Al Lamki (courtesy of the artist)

Curator’s Tour


Watch a virtual tour of the new exhibition, “Converging Lines: Tracing the Artistic Lineage of the Arab Diaspora in the U.S.” led by curator Maymanah Farhat.

Past MEI Art Gallery Exhibitions

Mission


The MEI Art Gallery is a unique platform in the nation’s capital dedicated to the exhibition of contemporary and modern art, photography, and video from the region. Located in the Dupont Circle area, close to museums, galleries and think tanks, the MEI Art Gallery promotes the work of the most exciting artists emerging from the Middle East and its diaspora in Washington and beyond. In line with MEI’s overall mission ‘to increase knowledge of the Middle East among citizens of the United States and to promote a better understanding between the people of these two areas,' the MEI Art Gallery seeks to: 

  1. Showcase the very best in contemporary and modern art, photography and video from Morocco to Afghanistan

  2. Provide a hub for dialogue about the role of the arts in society and ways U.S. audiences can better engage with artists to support the region’s arts, culture and heritage sectors

  3. Connect Middle Eastern artists with Washington’s art, culture and policy circles to facilitate partnerships and training opportunities

  4. Amplify the importance of the arts of the Middle East though panel talks, film screenings and educational workshops