Over the last two decades, the Arabian Peninsula has been the subject of critical attention regarding the rapid development of art initiatives and institutions, notably blockbuster transnational partnerships and attendant labor inequities. Less attention, however, has been given to the longer history of modern art in the region and the Peninsula’s artistic practices in comparative perspective. This publication brings together scholarly voices from across disciplines to consider the various movements, schools, collectives, manifestos, and debates that emerged in the countries of the Arabian Peninsula: Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, and Yemen throughout the 20th century. Contributions might address the following subjects: artists’ monographs, aesthetic debates in the press, artists’ collectives, exhibition histories, role of public sculpture, and the contextualization of art movements within regional histories. Themes may also consider the international scope of exhibitions and events that have molded the Arabian Peninsula into a global art capital. This call for essays welcomes scholarly explorations centered on the exchange of art and ideas between Gulf countries and their neighbors (e.g, Iran, South Asia, East Africa, and other Arab States) and how those dialogues have informed modern art in the Arabian Peninsula. We encourage submissions that consider the ways in which studies of modern art in the Arabian Peninsula might challenge conventional regional studies of modern Arab art or serve as a catalyst for broader disciplinary concerns with decolonizing art history.
We welcome abstracts for proposals addressing but not limited to the topics listed. Please submit a 500-word abstract along with a brief, one-page CV by September 15, 2020. Up to three accompanying images may be included in the body of the word document (optional). Abstracts should be submitted in MS office format (any recent version). Proposals in both English and Arabic will be accepted. Send your abstract to: MAAP@barjeel.com
The book will be edited by Nada Shabout, Sarah Rogers and Suheyla Takesh. Accepted contributions due on June 1, 2021. All essays will undergo a double-blind, peer-review process before final acceptance. Papers will be accepted in either English or Arabic and may include up to 7 images.