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‘Art in Airports’ aims to showcase Saudi culture

Visitors arriving at King Khalid International Airport in Riyadh can now visit the second “Connected: Art in Airports” Exhibition

Published: Updated:

Millions of visitors arriving at King Khalid International Airport (KKIA) in Riyadh can now visit the second “Connected: Art in Airports” Exhibition, hosting artwork of various local artists.

A full-fledged art gallery is set up in Terminal 3 of the airport, showcasing a selection of contemporary art showing historical, cultural, social and political aspects of Saudi life.

The exhibition is organized by Art Jameel, in collaboration with the General Authority of Civil Aviation and Saudi Fine Arts Association.

According to Nahar Marzoug, the Jeddah branch manager of the Saudi Fine Arts Association, the exhibition will run until July 1 at the transit point of the Kingdom’s largest city.

“We want to target the maximum number of international visitors we can. This is high season for tourists visiting the Kingdom. Most travelers don’t have a chance to get a glimpse of Saudi culture because of the short duration of their trips and tight schedules. So this gallery gives them an idea of our culture,” he said.

He added the art portfolios include a variety of themes for different tastes.

Visitor Talal Al-Takheis, also an artist, said, “The exhibition is a step in modernizing airports and attract visitors”.

Yousef Al-Abdan, director general of KKIA, said hosting this exhibition at the airport is a unique event and a wonderful opportunity for travelers to enjoy contemporary art and learn about Saudi artists while at the same time explore the Kingdom through contemporary paintings.

Travelers stopping by the capital can view a display of portfolios by seven acclaimed artists, including Abdulnasser Gharem, Ahmed Mater, Faisal Samra, Saeed Salem, Noorah Kareem, Rashed Al-Shashai and Huda Beydoun.

Dalia Moussa, program manager of Art Jameel, said, “The idea of the exhibition is to promote local artists and show the Saudi art scene to travelers”.

The catalogues are presented in the form of green passports. Their next destination is the King Fahd International Airport in Dammam.

Moussa added, “We plan to set up the same exhibition in international airports in the future”.

In seeking to promote contemporary art in the MENA region, Art in Airports is an initiative by Art Jameel, a cultural body of Abdul Latif Jameel Community Initiatives. Art Jameel is also engaged in projects and enterprises that involve arts and culture in private and pubic sectors.

The previous Art in Airport exhibition was at King Abdulaziz International Airport in Jeddah last year.