Integration and creativity are at the heart of a new worldwide search to commission a series of public art pieces to commemorate the upcoming Special Olympics World Games Abu Dhabi 2019 in March next year.
Hosted as part of annual event Abu Dhabi Art, which gathers fans, experts and creatives on a global scale, seven works will be commissioned from proposals by participating galleries to represent the emirates that make up the UAE, as well as the seven regions competing in the games.
Created by globally acclaimed artists in collaboration with people of determination, the pieces will be permanently displayed at Al Bahar on the Corniche.
Commenting on the initiative, HE Mohamed Khalifa Al Mubarak, chairman of the Department of Culture and Tourism Abu Dhabi, highlighted that the values of acceptance, unity and tolerance are especially relevant in the Year of Zayed: “We are honoured to begin this partnership with Special Olympics World Games Abu Dhabi. These commissions will represent the inclusion, acceptance and dignity we both encourage and aim to live by in our great nation and echo the vision of our Founding Father: respect, unity and fostering a sense of belonging for all.”
With over 7,000 athletes representing 170 countries set to compete at the games next year, it is hoped that the project will raise visibility of the issues faced by people with intellectual disabilities through creativity.
“One of the key objectives of the Legacy program of the Special Olympics World Games Abu Dhabi is to change societal perceptions towards people with intellectual disabilities, and to bring their talents and their plight to the light,” explained Tala Al Ramahi, chief strategy officer for the Special Olympics World Games.
“We believe this project will add great value to an already popular public space, by celebrating and commemorating inclusion.”