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Sotheby’s London’s Events Programme Celebrates Middle Eastern Culture

Titled ‘Hafla’, meaning celebration, Sotheby’s series of programmes and exhibitions honour Arab talent and creativity.

Laleh Bergman Hossain

Sotheby’s London’s Events Programme Celebrates Middle Eastern Culture

From August 12th to the 30th, Sotheby’s will take over London’s famed Bond Street for a series of events and exhibitions that showcase Middle Eastern culture.

Titled ‘Hafla’, meaning celebration, the events programme will include highlights such as five limited-edition handbags designed by Saudi Arabia’s Princess Nourah Al-Faisal. Created in collaboration with Asprey and the princess’s brand, Nuun, the bold designs of the handbags pay homage to the five major regions of the Kingdom through their colours, motifs and embroidery techniques.

In terms of the art, over 50 works - including paintings, sculptures and installations - spanning 50 years of Saudi Arabia’s contemporary visual art have been curated in collaboration with Qaswra Hafez, the founder of Jeddah’s Hafez Gallery.

The exhibition also highlights the rich calligraphic tradition of the Islamic world, featuring the earliest Qur’anic manuscripts written in Kufic script as well as the lavish calligraphy of the Qajars. The selection of work displays the evolution and breadth of the calligraphic arts from the 8th to the 21st Century.

‘Hafla’ will also host a series of events such as panel discussions and gallery tours alongside the exhibitions. The Sotheby’s Café is set to undergo a makeover to represent the region’s love for café culture.


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