The Youth Takeover 2022

The Assembly invites you to the annual Jameel Arts Centre Youth Takeover starting Wednesday May 18 and running until June 5, 2022.

The Assembly 2021-2022 cohort members are: artist Alexis Javero, artist and curator Anita Shishani, researcher/writer Farah Fawzi Ali, multidisciplinary artist and researcher Lubnah Ansari, multimedia designer Raheed Allaf, visual artist Rashid Almheiri, photographer, writer and pedagogue Shama Nair and artist, student and music producer Sree.

The Youth Takeover manifests as a physical takeover of the Jameel Arts Centre space, featuring multiple audiovisual and artwork interventions around the lobby, stairs, lockers, elevator and gallery spaces 9 and 10. The takeover is complemented by a rich public programme comprising workshops, talks, performances, a panel discussion and Assembly-guided tours.

This year’s theme, smol, is a journey towards the inner child. They are offered a face and seat at the table to be seen and held. With 8 original commissions of young artists, smol taps into the past for wisdom and introspection. The commissioned artists, including Assembly members and UAE-based young artists, are:

  • Anita Shishani
  • Ibrahim
  • Khaled Esguerra
  • mango
  • Raheed Allaf
  • Rashid Almheiri
  • Vedika Kushalappa
  • YONI

The mediums and thematic concepts prominent in smol reflect a process of relearning to be more playful and curious. The works metaphorically and stylistically colour outside the lines, traversing between dreams and reality, and confronting constricting rules and rituals. Returning to our childlike approach to the world, drawing on paper, illustration, and sound are prominent in the show, where scribbles, smudges, and static are welcome.

The 2022 takeover commissions are presented in conjunction with artwork loans from the Jameel Collection and the Endjavi-Barbé Art Collection. The Jameel Collection was a component of the Assembly’s in-house research process. The Dubai-based Endjavi-Barbé Art Collection in particular was explored by the Assembly during the theme conceptualisation process. The playful, vibrant and non-linear nature of this collection guided the cohort to explore the inner child as the essence of their theme.

Besides the commissions and collections of artworks, the 2022 Youth Takeover features public programmes that offer visitors space to nurture and explore their own inner child through a variety of performances, screenings and workshops including:

May 18 (opening preview + sound activation): Abu Dha-me Sound Activation by Khaled Esguerra

May 20, 25 and 28 (zine workshop): be-ing by Rummān Collective

May 21 (tour): Assembly-led Youth Takeover 2022 tour

May 21 (zine workshop): Dream Houses by Another Empty House (Fully Booked. Registration Closed)

May 22 (photowalk): Under a Sky in Transit by Zeashan Ashraf and Shama Nair (Fully Booked. Registrations Closed)

May 22 (youth-led crafts market): ‘support the smols’ organised by Farah Fawzi Ali (All welcome, no prior booking needed)

May 27 (screening + workshop) A – Z: cartoons screening & writing exercises by Anita Shishani

May 28 (tour): Assembly-led Youth Takeover 2022 tour

May 28 (making workshop) Exploring the Inner Child amidst Urban Metabolism by Manupriam Seth and Lubnah Ansari

May 29 (talk) Smol Panel Discussion by the Assembly 2021-2022 and programme curator Daniel H. Rey (All welcome, no prior booking needed)

May 29 and June 4 (play) Every Brilliant Thing by The Junction starring Gautam Goenka (All welcome, no prior booking needed)

June 4 (kids tour) ‘Mind Door: Imagination’ – children and family tour by Rashid Almheiri

For workshops, register your space by clicking through the above links.

The Assembly is an annual experimental programme designed to foster creative leaders aged 18 to 24 and invite the collective design of projects responding to their generation’s areas of interest. This year’s learning programme was designed, curated and facilitated by Daniel H. Rey, independent curator and alumnus from The Assembly 2020.




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