Scene from one of Luke Gossâ€™s films.
Muhammad Yusuf, Features Writer
Art be a Part, a new artistsâ€™ community in Dubai, has secured strong backing for its plans to help vulnerable children and support other humanitarian causes.
Philanthropist and artist Medha Nanda officially launched Art be a Part, an initiative which will support the work of Dubai Cares, part of Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Initiatives (MBRGI), while also supporting UNICEF India.
An international line-up of artists already on board have pledged paintings and photographic work to the movementâ€™s first fund-raising venture. They include Hollywood actor and musician Luke Goss, who developed his passion for painting during the Covid-19 lockdown; he has contributed two serigraphs that are together valued at $100,000.
The serigraphs will be sold during an auction at the Taj Hotel in Dubai on September 17, which is being held as part of the TiLT Festival and Conference, a global change makers summit bringing together thought leaders, CEOs, creatives and entrepreneurs from different nations. Proceeds from the auction will be directed to Dubai Cares and UNICEF India.
â€œWe are thrilled to be supporting Dubai Cares, and look forward to empowering each artist joining the community to play an active part in helping causes close to their hearts,â€ said Nanda. Expressing her happiness that she could support UNICEF India, she said that the focus will be on the most vulnerable segment of beings that cannot speak for themselves - children and animals.
Assistance will also be provided to areas affected by natural disaster or war. The aim is to ensure people have access to sanitary living conditions, health, education and nutrition. Efforts will also be made to conserve the habitat.
Abdulla Ahmed Alshehhi, Chief Operating Officer of Dubai Cares, said: â€œArt is a powerful medium to bring about positive change. Creative platforms like â€˜Art be a Partâ€™ are an excellent showcase of what we can accomplish when we come together under a collective spirit to make our world a better place for all.
â€œWe are thankful to â€˜Art be a Partâ€™ for engaging with the artist community to support our efforts in transforming the lives of children and youth through providing access to quality education.â€
Fairuz Taqi-Eddin, UNICEF Chief of Partnerships and Resource Mobilisation, Gulf Area Office in Dubai commented: â€œUNICEF is grateful for Art be a Part partnership and for this innovative event concept being launched in Dubai, bringing together artists, philanthropists and the wider community, to make a difference and support UNICEFâ€™s work for every child in India.â€
Welcoming the initiative, Richard Beighton, Chief, Resource Mobilisation and Partnerships at UNICEF India said: â€œUNICEF relies completely on voluntary support and donations to help us protect the lives of children and their chances of realising their dreams.
â€œWe are therefore grateful to have the support of champions for children like Medha Nanda, whose contribution will help us continue to give new opportunities to children across India.â€ Art be a Part aims to help emerging artists who need a platform for their works to be viewed. Collectively, the body will deliver help to children, communities, animals and nature, who are either being neglected or are forgotten. One of the first targets is to assist vulnerable children in the remotest regions of India. The aims set out by Nanda for Art be a Part have been met with particular enthusiasm by Luke Goss, who found fame with twin brother Matt in the 1980s British pop band, Bros.
After moving to Los Angeles in the 1990s, he launched a 20-year acting career which has brought critically acclaimed roles in movies such as Nomak in â€˜Blade IIâ€™ and Prince Nuada in â€˜Hellboy 2â€™. â€œArt be a Part sits within my hope for art, and the creative seeds that can be encouraged in young minds that will soon be shaping our world,â€ he said. â€œI was drawn to Art be a Part and its mission to bring about change through art, and to support UNICEF India. This meeting also led me to Dubai Cares, and showed me the wonderful work it does for children worldwide. Iâ€™m honoured to be a part of it all.â€
Others joining Art be a Part include Elena Fedosenko, Russian-born professional artist and art teacher, Italian Pablo Dana, known for exhibiting â€œsarcastic artâ€, Dubai-based Lebanese artist Dalia Chehab, and modern-day, mixed media artist, Mr. Bolshy.
The new community has also attracted a number of established photographers, among them Indian-born artist Cimmaron Singh, self-taught Harsh Bansal, nature and animals specialist Riyad Gandy, and Dubai-based Hermoine Macura-Noble, whose photographic artwork documented in the book â€˜Faces of the Middle Eastâ€™ has been exhibited in London, New York, Washington DC and other cities.
They are joined by Ratika van Noord, an artist whose medium of expression is words and is the author of â€œPlanet B â€“ Making of MITRAâ€, a science-fiction, adventure novel for children aged 8-14 years. The Art be a Part auction includes panel discussions featuring industry leaders, networking, workshops, music performances, pop-up cuisine showcases, wellness sessions, art exhibitions and film screenings. Since its inception in 2007, Dubai Cares has been working towards providing children and youth in developing countries with access to quality education through the design and funding of programmes that aim to be impactful, sustainable and scalable. To date, the UAE-based global philanthropic organisation has successfully launched education programmes reaching over 21 million beneficiaries in 60 developing countries.Â