Taking place from January 12 to March 24, the Winter 2024 Program: ‘Entanglements’ features Network Culture and Hana El-Sagini: Counting Fingers, as well as new workshops and special events


inst-2023-dec-421-x-hana-remaining-works-75-659e471f7b48d.jpg (original)


We are pleased to present our Winter 2024 program: Entanglements. Running from January 12 to March 24, this season features two major exhibitions and new workshops and special events that focus on community and connection. Opening on February 11 are Network Culture, a group exhibition resulting from the Homebound Residency Program and Counting Fingers, a solo exhibition by artist Hana El-Sagini who is part of this year’s 421 Artistic Development Program.


Running in tandem with these exhibitions, the Winter 2024 program promises a diverse range of workshops, talks, and special events that invite visitors to stay connected beyond the virtual realm. In a world that encourages us to disconnect, Entanglements sets an intention to challenge the status quo through embodying care and compassion for others. 


The program aims to harness a sense of friendship and unifying bonds through the power of presence and personal encounters. With a range of workshops,  jamming sessions, a film festival, community block (b)arties and more, Entanglements is a response to an ongoing digital fatigue.


“This season we invite visitors to share generously and compassionately with one another through our public program, which is in conversation with the exhibitions on view. Both exhibitions explore human connection and empathy from two very different perspectives. Hana El-Sagini’s solo exhibition Counting Fingers presents a new body of work that is rooted in the fragility of the human experience–it's an exercise in vulnerability that explores the innate human and supernatural mechanisms that keep us resilient in times of adversity. Network Culture, on the other hand, is an exploration of the power of community. It asks the question: what happens when we come together to explore and experiment? The exhibition is a result of our annual Homebound Residency program.” said Faisal Al Hassan, Head of 421. “The program has come to its natural conclusion as we move it from a digital experience to a physical one in our new artist studio spaces. We wanted to celebrate the achievements of the program and these artists who came together year after year to learn, experiment, and support one another.” 


A detailed schedule of the Winter 2024 program is detailed below: 


Upcoming Exhibitions


Hana El-Sagini: Counting Fingers

Part of the Artistic Development Program

On view from February 11 to April 28, 2024

Gallery 1 

In this major solo exhibition, Hana El-Sagini presents a newly commissioned large-scale installation rooted in the instability and fragility of the human experience. The installation showcases over 200 fantastical ceramic objects, culminating in surreal sculptures and structures that replicate and reimagine healthcare spaces, such as medical waiting rooms, hospital corridors, and doctors' offices. These spaces, typically perceived as sterile and stoic domains, are transformed into dreamlike sites that are bizarre, eerie, and amusing. Taking over Gallery 1, the showcased work immerses visitors in the artist's deeply personal world.


Counting Fingers reflects El-Sagini's intimate perspective on trauma. Produced after a long battle with illness, the objects featured in this exhibition encourage viewers to find joy and humor in envisioning a strange world where humans, animals, plants, and inanimate objects blend into semi-distinguishable forms and figures. Provocative and elusive, the exhibition prompts us to pause and contemplate the inherent mechanisms within our nervous systems that enable us to endure pain, trauma, fear, and adversity. These mechanisms, both human and supernatural, empower us to overcome and internalize trauma in ways that may potentially reconnect us with our vulnerability and, ultimately, our humanity.


El-Sagini is a participant in the 2024 cycle of the 421 Artistic Development Program, organized in partnership with The Institute for Emerging Art.


Network Culture

Part of the Homebound Residency Program

On view from February 11 to April 28, 2024

Gallery 2


This exhibition presents projects by participants in the Homebound Residency Program. The program, which ran annually from spring 2020 to fall 2023, has come to a natural conclusion with the expansion of our mission as a space and platform for emerging artists. Celebrating the work and explorations that took place over the course of the past three years, Network Culture  includes projects by twelve participating artists and creative practitioners whose practices have evolved and extended beyond the parameters of the program. This exhibition also acts as a departure point for future artists who will be part of the inaugural residency program which will take place in winter 2024 at our new artist studios here in Abu Dhabi. 


Network Culture is not only a celebration of the work produced during the program but also an acknowledgement of the importance of community in artistic practice. Throughout the program, artists, curators, researchers, and cultural workers came together digitally–due to the program coinciding with a global pandemic–to support one another and provide space for generative conversations, critique, and creative experimentation. The title ‘network culture' is also a nod to the historical phenomena we are witnessing today–an increasingly interconnected world that is shaped and influenced by the digital. Understanding Network Culture allows us to better assess the broader sociocultural structures and trends that shape time and temporality. Network Culture showcases a wide range of media, including photography, text and writing, audio and sound, film and moving image, sculpture and installation, curatorial research, performance lectures and performance documentation, as well as community-activated workshops and events, and community-sourced resources for artists and creative practitioners.


The works featured in this exhibition are by Yara Asmar, Mona Ayyash, BaRiya, Raghvi Bhatia, Nihaal Faizal, Kimia Collective (Chahine Fellahi and Kaïs Aïouch), Batool Desouky and Zain Mahjoub, Engy Mohsen, Roger Mokbel, Fatma Belkıs and Onur Gökmen, Mahshid Rafiei, Ayesha Singh, and Salem Al Suwaidi.


Winter 2024 Program 

January 12 to March 24, 2024 



Performance Co/Lab 

Date: January 28, February 4 and 25, March 10 


Performance Co/Lab is an open invitation to all performing artists, creatives, and curious individuals looking to explore movement practices. Through a sustained program, participants will explore performance exercises such as contact improvisation, breath work, acting warm-ups, games, and techniques. Each session will introduce new and unique exercises throughout the duration of the program. Performance Co/Lab is a  gathering facilitated by the community for the community.



Zine-making with Salem AlSuwaidi

Date: February 1


Discover zine-making in this workshop led by writer Salem AlSuwaidi. Bring your old magazines, photographs, journal entries, and stickers as you immerse yourself in this hands-on experience. Guided by the theme of public spaces in Abu Dhabi, explore unconventional materials, organize content, design themed spreads, and ultimately craft your self-published zine. Together, we will be visualizing the past, present, and future of these spaces, creating unique mini self-published works to take home.


Salem AlSuwaidi is a part of the exhibition ‘Network Culture’. This workshop will be open to everyone ages 18 and above.



Jamming Session: Ice Cream Alchemy with Anant and Rihab

Date: February 3 


Our first jamming session of the season will be with Anant and Rihab, Co-founders of Mina Creamery. Participants will learn about the UAE’s rich food heritage while making homemade, all-natural ice cream. Ingredients will include unique flavor combinations like orange cardamom and fresh ‘ruttab’.



Jamming Session: Sudanese Flavors with Sarrah and Amat

Date: February 18 


Jamming Sessions are back, and this time they bring mother-daughter duo Amat and Sarrah who  will introduce us to famous Sudanese dishes, Salatat Dakwa and Foul Medames accompanied by the well-known hibiscus drink Karkadeh but with a twist. In Sudan, sharing a meal has historically and culturally been considered a symbol of peace and harmony between two parties.



Jamming Sessions: Homemade Superfood Za’atar with Manal and Darah

Date: March 3 


Join mom-daughter duo Manal and Darah in this homemade Za’atar making session. In the session, home chef Manal will introduce you to the history of Za’atar, a staple culinary spice mixture in Levantine households. 

Although Za’atar can’t be traced to a particular region or area in the Levant,  the session will focus specifically on the Palestinian method of preparing Za’atar, which includes dried thyme, oregano, sumac, and sesame seeds, but with a twist that includes ingredients from more experimental and contemporary culinary practices. Leave the session with your own jar of homemade Za’atar and a new appreciation for recipes that are passed down through generations. 


All the Wild Things Film Festival with Cinema Akil 

Dates: February 16, 17 and 18


This season will also see a weekend celebrating regional independent cinema. This expansive program includes film screenings, talks, workshops, activations, and family-friendly screenings too. The three-day festival will present feature-length and short films in the narrative, documentary, and experimental genres.

Panel discussions and Q&A sessions led by filmmakers and creatives will also take place, exploring topics inspired by the films screened throughout the program. 

Children's film screenings will take place indoors and include snacks, drinks, and comfy bean bags.


Nature Walk and Research 

Foraging the Mina with Shereen Saif

Date: February 3


Join performance artist Shereen Saif on a public walk that explores Mina Zayed’s biodiverse ecosystem. This walk will be an open space for shared research, documentation, conversations and reflections as a community rediscovering Mina Zayed together.This event is an open invitation to all creatives to help be a part of the documentation process.


The Culture Bus

The Culture Bus will return this fall to offer exciting tours across the UAE, including discounted rates on tickets and guided tours with a group of like-minded art enthusiasts. The tours this season include:


Al Qouz Arts Fest

Date: January 28, 2024


Sikka Arts Fest

Date: March 2, 2024


Art Dubai

Date: March 3, 2024

Check our website for more information.