It would be fair to say that Dubai’s reputation is not exactly that of a cultural hotspot, but away from the beach bars and brunches there are plenty of people working hard to reveal that reputation for what it is: a lazy assumption.
Case in point is The Dot, a new venue that has just opened in the already brilliant Al Serkal Avenue. Born from The Confused Arab, a digital platform interrogating Arab culture, The Dot is a cultural and creative space for anyone interested in the changes that are ongoing in the Arab world.
Taking its name from the dot used to locate yourself on a map, a dot used in Arabic can completely transform letters and in turn meanings associated with a word.
The Dot’s remit is to highlight the diversity of Arab culture and challenge preconceived notions that surround it.
To achieve their goal, the team behind it are beginning with the simplest but often most effective way of driving change: talking.
Beginning on Saturday January 25, The Dot will host carefully curated panel discussions, the first one of which, “Arab identities through spaces: Are we all “Arabs” the same way everywhere?” starts at 4pm.
Featuring Emirati film director Abdullah Al Kaabi, French-Syrian journalist, Leila Al Aouf, Canadian-Palestinian Nike Middle East communication manager Riham Aboura and Sofiane Si Merabet, the French-Algerian founder of “The Confused Arab” and cultural agency “Karta”, expect it to be a meaningful discussion about Arab identity.
The Confused Arab platform was founded on the basis of reshaping the idea of nostalgia in the Arab world. Pushing the concept of Future Nostalgia instead, the idea is to look forward as well as back.
“Let’s change their perception of who we are and who we want to be.” Say Confused Arab.
Creating spaces like The Dot, which act as cultural hubs, is an excellent place to start.
Al Serkal Avenue - Warehouse 22