The Zayed University Urban Satellite Space (ZUUSS) has opened in partnership with Alserkal Avenue. Inaugurated by HE Noura bint Mohammed Al Kaabi, Minister of Culture and Knowledge Development, and President of Zayed University, ZUUSS aims to support local, emerging talent and provide a platform for students to showcase their work to a wider audience. Opening with the support of Alserkal Avenue, which was founded by Abdelmonem Bin Eisa Alserkal, the space is located in Warehouse 48 in Alserkal Avenue. Open to the public, ZUUSS will operate as an off-campus space for the university’s students, alumni, and faculty to gather, and will host exhibitions, workshops, lectures, panel discussions, and community events.
Her Excellency commented that, “ZUUSS is not just showcasing remarkable art and design, but also interlocks Zayed University students with other bright minds and field experts. “We see our role as fostering and building a vibrant art and design community in the UAE and abroad through our graduates, the new up-and-coming artists, designers, gallery curators, art policymakers, educators and arts administrators. Art and Design are major contributors to a nation’s creative economy, and they are the most significant export of a country in establishing its global identity," she added.
Opening the space and viewing the Peeling Back the Blue Sky opening exhibition, H.E Noura Al Kaabi toured alongside Abdelmonem Bin Eisa Alserkal, Founder of Alserkal Avenue, Professor Reyadh AlMehaideb, Vice-President of Zayed University, Vilma Jurkute, Director of Alserkal Avenue, and Kevin Badni, Dean of the College of Arts and Creative Enterprises, along with a number of ZU faculty members and staff from both campuses. “Outreach and connecting with the youth of the UAE has always been an integral part of what we do at Alserkal Avenue. Zayed University’s Urban Satellite Space is a continuation of our longstanding partnership with Zayed University. We look forward to welcoming aspiring artists and designers to Alserkal Avenue and to bringing our audiences engaging and thought-provoking programming from the CACE faculty and students.” says Abdelmonem Bin Eisa Alserkal, Founder of Alserkal Avenue.
The inaugural exhibition showcases works from College of Arts and Creative Enterprises (CACE) students and alumni, including Ayesha Hadhir, Jumaanah Alhashemi, Maitha Abdalla, Mariam Eisa Al Fahim, Meera Alhameli, Narjes Noureddine, Rawdha AlKetbi, and Shaikha Al Ketbi. For the opening of ZUUSS, CACE unveiled the winning design of the Bespoke Furniture Design Contest 2018 hosted by Vision Furniture & Decoration Factory, Abu Dhabi. The winner of the contest was Alyaa Nasser Al Breiki. The piece was constructed at Vision Factory and is called “112 degrees”. Al Breiki said: “This project was my favourite since I am interested in the construction part of design. I was able to communicate with Vision Factory’s engineers and discuss my design at a professional level. It was truly a great experience, especially that I got to see my furniture design in reality.”
ZUUSS was initiated by the previous dean of CACE Ann-Maree Reaney in collaboration with Walter Willems, Exhibitions Curator at Zayed University. Through ZUUSS, CACE aims to prepare graduates to become leaders in the field of art and design practice and to be innovators who will contribute to the cultural fabric of the UAE.