Exploring The Art Festival Of Lights: Noor Riyadh Returns To Saudi Arabia’s Capital This November

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Returning to Saudi Arabia this November, Noor Riyadh brings along an international lineup of light artists, public programming, and two weeks of creative events. Featuring over 100 makers from around the world and Saudi Arabia, Noor Riyadh has expanded since its debut last year, and is set to illuminate 40 locations within the capital city. In full swing as the sun goes down, the festival will present over 120 installations centered around the phrase “We Dream of New Horizons”.

Encompassing the twin sensations of hope and looking forward, the theme explores the idea of light as a guiding factor. The festival marks Riyadh’s recent ascent to an active arts destination. Art enthusiasts from across the globe are expected to attend this November’s events, which are nearly triple the size of last year’s. Making the city its playground, Noor Riyadh is one of the largest festivals of its kind, bridging public art with technological innovation and community- driven arts initiatives.

Representing over 40 nationalities, this year’s featured festival artists include Jean- Michel Othoniel, Daniel Buren, Alicja Kwade and Ayman Zedani, focusing on diverse mediums ranging from site-specific installations to virtual reality experiences. Herve Mikaeloff, Dorothy Di Stefano and Jumana Ghouth are this year’s co-curators.

‘From Spark to Spirit’ is an additional exhibition happening alongside the festival, accompanying its overall theme and focus on light-based media. Curated by Neville Wakefield and associate curator Gaida AlMogren, the showcase will look at light as a symbol of change and movement, with a special focus on the Middle East’s cultural landscape.

Over 500 separate events will be taking place across the city as the festival progresses, along with guided tours, workshops, and musical performances. Some will even be accessible remotely, via the Riyadh Art website. Navigating the intricate ins and outs of a bustling capital city, Noor Riyadh’s exploration of large-scale installation, public space and light as symbolism turns the landscape into a platform for expanded cultural dialogue.

Having already expanded significantly since last year, Noor Riyadh is on its way to becoming one of the world’s premiere contemporary art events, especially as pioneering technology continues to influence modern ways of making. This year’s festival promises over two weeks of engaged programming and sundown showcases that become an entirely new way to navigate Riyadh, both by day and by night.

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