Still from CAMP’s From Gulf to Gulf to Gulf, 2010, commissioned by Sharjah Art Foundation. Courtesy of the artist.

Ten Artists Awarded Sharjah Art Foundation Grants to Create New Work

The Sharjah Art Foundation has named ten artists as the recipients of its biannual Production Program grants. The 2020 grantees—Jumana Emil Abboud, Mohamed Abdelkarim, Noor Abuarafeh, Basma al-Sharif, Abdessamad El Montassir, Köken Ergun, Pak Khawateen Painting Club, Moad Musbahi, Philip Rizk, and Subversive Film—will be awarded a total of $200,000 in support of the creation of new work. As one of the foundation’s core initiatives, the program aims to encourage innovation and experimentation in artistic practice in the MENASA region.

Through an international open call, the art practitioners were invited to propose ambitious projects that “expand our understanding of what art is and how it can be experienced.” The proposals were then selected by a jury comprising Iftikhar Dadi, Lara Khaldi, and Agustín Pérez Rubio. In the past, the jury would choose between two and six proposals, but in response to the economic hardships artists are facing due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the foundation increased the number of awardees for the seventh grant cycle.

Originally launched alongside Sharjah Biennial 9 in 2009, the Production Program has been offered biannually since 2010. Past recipients include CAMP and Bani Abidi, whose projects debuted at Documenta 13; Sean Gullette, whose film Traitors premiered at the 2013 Venice Film Festival; and Khaled Sabsabi, whose work Bring the Silence was included in the twenty-first Biennale of Sydney.