RIYADH (Rahnuma) : When you think of cities around the world famous for their art, Riyadh does not instantly spring to mind, but with Saudi Arabia’s cultural revolution beginning in earnest, all that will change.
Last month, King Salman announced four projects for the capital, one of which is Riyadh Art, which will feature the distribution of more than 1,000 pieces of art in public spaces throughout the city by the end of 2023.
Saudi Arabia “has a rich archaeological, architectural and cultural history, as well as an increasingly dynamic contemporary art scene,” said Edward Gibbs, Sotheby’s chairman for the Middle East and India.
“Pioneering projects such as … the open-air Sculpture Museum in Jeddah paved the way by showing the tangible social benefits of displaying contemporary art in an urban setting,” he added.
“Riyadh Art is an exciting new initiative which promises to promote new dialogues, forging conversations between the next generation of Saudi artists and the wider community,” he said.
“We look forward to seeing the expanded artistic and creative perspectives that Riyadh Art is sure to bring to the capital city, as well as to other centers of creativity in the Kingdom.”
In the 1950s, Saudi artists took inspiration from European Renaissance paintings. In the 1960s, the first art scholarships were awarded to young Saudis, giving them the opportunity to travel abroad.