Gallery Hopping Around Alserkal Avenue
The most cutting-edge galleries within Dubai’s growing art scene cluster in a sprawling warehouse campus called Alserkal Avenue in industrial area Al Quoz, east of Sheikh Zayed Rd. A crop of urban cafes fuels the arty vibe.
Tom & Serg
Fuel up for your gallery hop with great coffee and a bite at this lofty warehouse-style cafe with concrete floors, exposed pipes and an open kitchen. The menu includes feel-good dishes such as Moroccan chicken, eggs benedict and a mean burger on a homemade bun.
The Third Line
The Third Line has championed contemporary Middle Eastern art since 2005 and remains a cornerstone of Dubai's growing gallery scene. Emiratis Lamya Gargash and Ebtisam Abdulaziz are among the artists it represents.
Mirzam Chocolate Makers
Mirzam operates a chocolate factory where visitors can watch all stages of production – from roasting to hand-wrapping – taking place in a glass-encased chocolate laboratory. Drop by the integrated shop to sample and buy the final product. Staff host one-hour tour and tasting workshops (Dhs37), plus classes for children. Sign up via the website.
Leila Heller Gallery
Since the late 1970s this prestigious New York gallery has been a conduit for artistic and cultural dialogue between Western, Middle Eastern, Central Asian and Southeast Asian artists. Its Dubai branch opened in 2015 and is the largest gallery in the UAE, with three distinct exhibition areas. Artists on its roster include Pakistani artist Rashid Rana and New York–based Moroccan photographer Lalla Essaydi.
This talent management agency runs a much-beloved concert series (usually on Fridays) that shines the spotlight on local talent still operating below the radar.
Gallery Isabelle van den Eynde
This edgy gallery has been a household name on the Dubai art scene since 2006. It promotes progressive and emerging talent from around the region and often presents envelope-pushing exhibits. Artists represented include Hassan Sharif and Bita Fayyazi.
Hailing from Damascus, this top gallery promotes emerging Middle Eastern (especially Syrian) artists, including provocative, political and feminist work and voices. It has another branch in Gate Village in the Dubai International Financial Centre.
Salsasi Private Museum
Ramin Salsali is a German-Iranian businessman and art collector who bought his first painting at the tender age of 21. Since then, his collection has grown to comprise some 800 paintings, sculptures and installations, a selection of which he presents for free at this private museum in the hopes of inspiring the next generation of art fans.
- Progressive Middle Eastern galleries
- Cool cafes
Metro FGB or Noor Bank and then taxi