The NYUAD Art Gallery Opens Expansive Spring Exhibition, Marking its 10th Year Since Opening

Installation view: Gözde İlkin, Entrusted Ground, 2022-ongoing. Dyed and stitched fabrics, fiber filling, stones, twigs, video, 3-channel sound, performance, dimensions variable. Photo: John Varghese.

In Real Time will see works evolve as the show progresses

The NYU Abu Dhabi (NYUAD) Art Gallery marks ten years since its founding with the opening of its spring exhibition, In Real Time. Opening today, February 22, the exhibition will continue to grow and change over the coming months, “in real time.” 

A number of artists have already installed artworks, and others will make work in the future. As of today, artists assembled by Chief Curator Maya Allison include Moza Almatrooshi, Rana Begum, Chafa Ghaddar, Gözde İlkin, Sol LeWitt, Cristiana de Marchi, and Haleh Redjaian, as well as the artist trio Ramin Haerizadeh, Rokni Haerizadeh and Hesam Rahmanian with Julie Becton Gillum and Kiori Kawai. As new artists or performers are added, the list will grow, and the Art Gallery’s Instagram account will announce artists and artwork developments in real time.

Today, some artworks appear as a letter of intent, to be performed or installed in the future. Some works will be changed by performers. Some might only last one day. Some are already made, with a specific message: consider the space around yourself. Two of the works will be made entirely by the hands of the community. Others are not even mentioned yet. 

The exhibition is curated by Executive Director of the NYUAD Art Gallery Maya Allison, with a curatorial intervention by Curator and Research Assistant Professor Duygu Demir, who recently joined NYU Abu Dhabi. Demir is collaborating with artist Gözde İlkin to install an entire scenography, to be activated by performers in the coming months.


“Every time I embark on a new curatorial project, I ask the ‘why’ of art. This line of questioning is a bracing, uncomfortable process, but a very rewarding one because the answer changes depending on what is happening in the world. In Real Time emerges in response to a sense of urgency, today: perhaps art can offer something different from the news, from the scroll, and yet not distract us or make us forget. As the show evolves, history unfolds around us. What do we need from a space for art in this particular moment, in this particular part of the world, in a university, in an academic gallery? I hope this exhibition allows for any number of responses.”

Executive Director of the NYUAD Art Gallery Maya Allison

The NYUAD Art Gallery’s founding decade has seen major artist commissions, book publications, and historical research exhibitions from across the globe that have earned it international recognition and awards. It also supports an exhibition laboratory, the Project Space, for the academic and regional community, including MFA and undergraduate final projects, faculty-curated exhibitions, and the work of regional emerging artists. Together,  the spaces of NYUAD’s Art Gallery serve as a testing ground for curatorial strategies that nourish innovation around exhibition practice in the Gulf, and in dialogue with the global art world.