NYU Abu Dhabi Art Gallery to reopen for first time since pandemic began

For the first time since the start of the pandemic, the NYU Abu Dhabi Art Gallery will reopen with a physical exhibition on November 15.

The exhibition, Modernisms: Iranian, Turkish and Indian Highlights from NYU’s Abby Weed Gray Collection, features paintings and sculptures from the 1960s by artists such as Parviz Tanavoli, Fahrelnissa Zeid, MF Husain, Abindin Eldergolu, and Prabhakar Barwe. .

Gray was an American collector interested in modern art from non-Western cultures. She traveled to several countries in the 1960s and early 1970s, including Iran eight times and India and Turkey four times, acquiring prints, drawings, paintings and sculptures in the process of road. During her travels, she collected 200 works from Iran, 175 from India and 95 from Turkey.

Her acquisitions then became the core of the Abby Weed Gray collection of modern art from Asia and the Middle East at the Gray Art Gallery at New York University, which she established in 1974.

Apart from Iran and Turkey, the art gallery has the largest collection of modern Iranian art and Turkish art. His first trip to Iran dates from 1960, also dates from the second national modern art biennial in Tehran. During his travels, Gray visited artists’ studios, attracted by those who were able to work with traditional Indigenous arts, but also carved out their own styles and aesthetics.

The exhibition at NYU Abu Dhabi Art Gallery will feature works by members of the Saqqakhaneh school in Iran, including Tanavoli, Faramarz Pilaram and Charles Hossein Zenderoudi, who have reinvented the country’s traditional forms of calligraphy and ornamentation in more contemporary styles.

There are also works by Turkish modernists, including Bedri Rahmi Eyuboglu, whose work Full moon from 1961 shows a crimson canvas with the celestial body depicted in different colors. Eyuboglu and his fellow artist Eldergolu both sought to forge distinctly Turkish art rather than borrowing from Western styles.

Renowned artist Zeid developed his signature style by disregarding the geometric shapes of the ornamental elements of Turkish art and architecture.

Modernisms will also include Grey’s personal letters, newspapers, catalogs and photographs from the university archives.

The exhibition opened in New York in 2019 and also visited the Block Museum of Art at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois. His arrival in the United Arab Emirates marks the first time that the university’s arts space will have an in-person presentation after running a number of virtual programs starting in spring 2020.

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Maya Allison, chief curator at NYU Abu Dhabi and executive director of the NYUAD Art Gallery, highlighted the exhibition’s “historical significance and regional relevance”. She said Grey’s goal was to “promote international artistic exchange in an academic setting.”

The exhibition will run from Monday November 15 to Saturday February 5 and will be accompanied by a book about the artists featured and how the Abby Weed Gray collection aims to showcase modern art outside of North America. North and Europe.

Entrance to the exhibition is free, but visitors will need to make an appointment online before visiting. Tickets will be available from Wednesday October 27.

More information is available at nyuad-artgallery.org

Update: October 13, 2021, 2:40 p.m.

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