The Quoz Arts Fest recently returned to Dubai for its ninth edition. The free festival at Alserkal Avenue is a mix of live music performances, exhibitions, food trucks, interactive art and wellness practises.
The action-packed schedule kicked off with yoga in the yard, where yogis were able to enjoy their morning practice in the open air.
Simona Stanton, founder & Owner of Shimis Yoga Studio said Alserkal is all about different concepts of businesses and the passions of the founders
“That's what we love about Quoz Arts Fest, because it brings together so many people that might not have heard about yoga just yet. And this is an opportunity for them and us to share this passion with others and create a stronger and bigger community,” she told Euronews.
This years’ edition was held under the theme ‘Waking Dreams’. The organisers invited visitors to sleepwalk through daytime dreamscapes, turning the creative hub into a space suspended in time. One of the standout attractions was Gaia, a touring artwork by UK artist Luke Jerram. Measuring seven metres in diameter it features detailed NASA imagery of the Earth's surface, acting as a mirror to major events in society.
The creative community within Alserkal Avenue and Al Quoz, including Courtyard, Times Square, The Smash Room and Akka Project came together for the weekend festival. It is a celebration of arts and culture from the region.
There was also a wide range of local independent businesses from food trucks, to clothes and jewellery vendors. Alongside temporary stalls, many of the permanent residents of Alserkal offered something different for the event.
At creative space and coffee shop Kave, they held a ‘market of misfits’ showcasing a range of sustainable and creative items.
Zaina Kanaan, the Co-Founder at Kave, said the additional traffic from the event had been great because it had enabled people to come in and be curious and see what they do.
“For us, it's all about spreading the word about what we do and having more people kind of join in the community. So things like this bring people together, and it kind of allows us as a platform to bring forth what we do and to present it to the world in a more sustainable format.”
Another full-time tenant of Alserkal is Cinema Akil, an art-house cinema screening independent films. They held an extensive programme of events including a movie marathon during the festival.
The marketing and Business Development Manager at Cinema Akil, Khalid Al-Sabi said it’s a unique place like no other in the UAE.
“It was the first arthouse cinema in the region, and we bring films that are not usually filmed in or screened in multiplex cinemas. So it's a platform to really support and push filmmakers and directors upcoming ones from around the globe or locally, or regionally. And we, you know, we are proud to be a home for these activities.”
With over 45,000 people in attendance, this was the largest festival to date.