March 19, 2018
Coinciding with Dubai’s seventh annual week-long celebration of art, design and culture, Christie’s and Bloomberg Media Group teamed up to share both artistry and insight with advertising and marketing executives from the region.
Guests from firms including Citi, Emirates, Dubai Chamber of Commerce, Standard Chartered Bank and others got a behind-the-scenes view of rare luxury timepieces from Christie’s upcoming Important Watches sale – led by Rémy Julia, Head of Watches Middle East, India and Africa at Christie’s Dubai.
“There is a community a watch collectors in every region,” said Julia, adding that social media is also creating new communities of watch enthusiasts: “Trades of watches are happening on Instagram nowadays.” The Important Watches sale prominently features a Patek Philippe Reference 1518 wristwatch, one of only 281 examples made since the model was first released in 1941 and the property of Egypt’s King Farouk.
Christie’s Middle East Managing Director and Deputy Chairman Michael Jeha offered guests a look at key trends in the Middle East art market, citing new connections that are expanding the Middle East’s role in the global landscape. “The importance of art and culture in the region has recently received a fantastic boost with the opening of the Louvre Abu Dhabi and the much acclaimed acquisition at Christie’s of Leonardo da Vinci’s Salvator Mundi from a regional collector,” he said. And he added that “more than ever, Christie’s continue to be present and active in the Middle-East.”
Ziad Daoud, Chief Middle East Economist at Bloomberg Economics, added broader macro-economic context with an outlook on regional trends in 2018. “Christie’s auctions highlight the growing importance of Dubai, and the Middle East more broadly, as a global center for trade in traditional as well as niche products,” he said. “These auctions bring buyers and sellers from the region and beyond, and help set global benchmarks for prices of luxury goods.”
Guests also received a private preview of Christie’s Post-War and Contemporary Art sale, which features 20th and 21st Century Middle Eastern art, including works by distinguished female artists of the region such as Fahr El-Nissa Zeid and Hayv Kahraman as well as works by the Armenian-Lebanese master Paul Guiragossian. Both Dubai: Post-War and Contemporary Art and Important Watches sales take place later this week.
Read more: Bloomberg and Christie’s explain the art of collecting