Jaddaf Waterfront Sculpture Park is adjacent to Jameel Arts Centre and is the UAE’s first open-air art and sculpture park. It was designed to balance the rippling water of Jaddaf Creek with the stacked geometry of the Jameel. The result, a fluid and easily navigated criss-cross of paths, reflects a hidden geometry that both defines distinct zones and builds an organic flow between them. The site-specific approach of park creators ibda design, an architecture studio founded in the UAE by Wael Al Awar and Kenichi Teramoto, placed a premium on accommodating both human behaviour and the aesthetic needs of the featured works.
Designed as an active and lively outdoor gallery space that welcomes community engagement, the Park transitions seamlessly from the open walkway around the corniche and features zones of fixed furniture with speciality tables for board games or chess, as well as an area designed for food trucks, where vendors can set up temporary stalls. A playground – with a child-centric topography, flexible rubber surface and sand station for experiential play – creates a safe and inviting space for families. A central feature of the park is the 200-seat amphitheatre for film screenings, performances, and talks; organically integrated into the surrounding landscape, the amphitheatre will host programming curated by the Jameel and community partners.
Recognising the potential impact of severe environmental conditions – salt, wind, water, sun – the works featured in the Park will be exhibited on long-term rotation. Pieces installed during the November 2018 opening of the park reflect themes of nature, atmosphere, transformation, immersion, and geometry as well as local and regional traditional forms.
Formation III: The Dappled Light of the Sun, is a new large scale work by Conrad Shawcross at the park. The new permanent installation comprises geometric structures that give an impression of organically branching, cloud-like forms made up of thousands of tetrahedrons. The immersive canopy stands on three tripods, six meters above ground level, revolving around geometry’s natural patterns.
Hassan Khan transforms the park with a multi-lingual musical artwork, Composition for a Public Park. Unfolding across Jaddaf Waterfront Sculpture Park through three simultaneous movements, the work includes a spoken libretto, written by Khan and presented here in Dubai in three languages — Arabic, Urdu and English.
Inspired by Cycladic sculpture and futurism, Helaine Blumenfeld brings a mass of hard bronze to life with the fluid form of Tempesta, 2013 – a unique crossover between figuration and abstraction.
Talin Hazbar and Latifa Saeed reimagine the majlis – a site where family, neighbours and members of a community gather – with a seating installation crafted in terracotta clay. Created in close collaboration with local craftsmen, Left Impression, 2018, is comprised of a series of purposefully deformed geometric forms, emphasising their origin in artistic handicraft rather than industrial process.
The opening programming of the Jaddaf Waterfront Sculpture Park included the Middle Eastern/Asian premiere of the world-acclaimed immersive outdoor light installation WATERLICHT by Dutch artist and design creative Daan Roosegaarde.
The park is developed in partnership with Dubai Holding.