UAE Embassy and Dirwaza Curatorial Lab Art Exhibition Showcases Contemporary Art from the Emirates

September 26, 2022

A contemporary art exhibition featuring works by female artists in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has come to Washington, D.C.

Presented by the UAE Embassy in Washington, D.C. and curated by Dirwaza Curatorial Lab, an Abu Dhabi-based creative incubator, While the Coffee Grounds Settle: Stories from Women in the UAE features works by a diverse group of 27 female artists from across the UAE who span nationalities, generations and artistic styles. It celebrates and honors women who have contributed immensely to the development and progress of the UAE's vibrant and diverse creative landscape, while examining how indoor social spaces, like the living room, can foster community-building among women.

The diversity of the participating artists is reflected in the featured artworks which encompass a range of artistic mediums and themes. Among the exhibitors are digital artist Ghada Al Sayegh and installation artist Shaikha Al Ketbi whose works explore the individual subconscious. Also featured are abstract painters Dr. Najat Makki and Bénédicte Gimonnet who examine the concept of social collectives in their respective works.

“Art has a special ability to connect diverse people and cultures,” said Shaima Gargash, Deputy Chief of Mission at the UAE Embassy in Washington, D.C. “This collection of work celebrates women and the spaces that bring us together.”

Uniquely positioned at the crossroads between East and West, the UAE has emerged in recent decades as a global hub for the arts. It is home to world-class museums like the Louvre Abu Dhabi, unique galleries and performance spaces at the renowned Alserkal Avenue, and leading regional art fairs like Art Dubai and the Sharjah Biennial. Women are at the vanguard of the UAE’s burgeoning cultural scene, leading a majority of the country’s art institutions.

“This exhibition celebrates the role of women as one that is essential to the building blocks of any nation or society. It also seeks to highlight the nature of exchange, community and growth by bringing the intimate space of the living room to the foreground of the conversation,” added Munira Al Sayegh, founder of Dirwaza Curatorial Lab and independent curator.

While the Coffee Grounds Settle: Stories from Women in the UAE runs from 23 September – 14 October at the Fathom Gallery in Georgetown. The exhibition is open to the general public from 11:00AM to 6:00PM each day, with the exception of 12 and 13 October, and admission is free.

For more information, visit