The organisers of Art Dubai, whose 16th edition opens in less than a month (1-5 March), have decided to donate 50% of online ticket sales for the fair to support victims of the earthquakes that have devastated southern Turkey and northern Syria. The 7.8-magnitude earthquake and its aftershocks have led to more than 7,700 deaths and caused severe damage to historic sites throughout the region.
“When there is a humanitarian disaster like the one unfolding in Turkey and Syria, a swift response is important,” a spokesperson for Art Dubai tells The Art Newspaper. “The areas and communities affected are some of those that we are particularly close to in the region and it’s important to be able to help however we can, and for that support to be pledged as early and quickly as possible.”
This isn’t the first time organisers of the Middle East fair have lent a hand during troubled times. Last year, a similar initiative was taken to offer help for the people of Ukraine. But this tragedy hits close to home, as the fair has previously embraced artists, gallerists, collectors and collaborators associated with both Turkey and Syria. The funds will be donated to registered local and international charities, as well as non-government organisations, passing on the proceeds directly to those in need, based on e-tickets purchased between now and 28 February. A single ticket costs 90 Dirhams (around £20), whereas a three-day pass is priced at 120 Dirhams (around £27).
“The money will be sent as soon as is practically possible,” the Art Dubai spokesperson adds. “This is clearly an evolving situation and we want to make sure that the money has the maximum possible impact for those who will need it the most.”