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Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 21 September 2018

Art Dubai director Myrna Ayad steps down

Calling the decision an “entirely personal” one, Ayad is leaving the fair to establish a cultural strategy consultancy

Myrna Ayad is leaving Art Dubai to establish a cultural strategy consultancy Courtesy of Art Dubai

Art Dubai director Myrna Ayad is stepping down after two years. Calling the decision an “entirely personal” one, Ayad is leaving the fair to establish a cultural strategy consultancy.

“I feel passionate about production and cultural development in the MENASA region,” she says. “The fair has given me and all of us so much. But I wanted to help more and in different ways.”

While at Art Dubai, Ayad strengthened the Art Dubai Modern programme, adding galleries to the selection and instituting the Modern Symposium of curated talks. This coming year, the contemporary and modern sections will be merged, though they will continue to be overseen by separate selection committees.

Having taken over from Antonia Carver, who ran the fair for six years and who is now director of Art Jameel, Ayad’s tenure at Art Dubai was successful: the fair has maintained its position globally and, within the Emirates, of anchoring the so-called March Madness week of art events.

Ayad was editor-in-chief of the art and culture magazine Canvas before joining the fair, and publishing will be one of the activities that she will focus on in the consultancy, in addition to brand strategy, developing collections, and organising symposia. “Once a scribe, always a scribe,” she says.

Art Dubai has yet to announce a successor. “We are grateful to Myrna for her contribution as a director of the fair and in particular she was pivotal in the success of the Art Dubai Modern Symposium, which she launched whilst at the fair. We wish her all the best in her professional and personal endeavours,” Art Dubai said in a statement.

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