The ARAK collection is managed by Curating Cultures, a Kuwaiti company specialized in providing consulting services and developing strategic planning to implement cultural and artistic projects to support the creative and cultural industries. The ARAK Collection is an independent, Qatari-based initiative, that aims to promote through exhibitions, publications, research and educational programs, contemporary sub-Saharan African art and artists. The collection is a resource for artists, curators and researchers, it hosts in-house and traveling exhibitions, it also lends artwork to regional and international organizations, institutions and museums, producing print and online publications, and impactful public programs associated with the exhibitions it produces and hosts.

Yasmeen Abdulla (Sudan), Untitled, acrylic on paper

ARAK Collection is a public platform to foster critical dialogue around contemporary art practices with a focus on Sub-Saharan African Artists and educational programs that have an educational and developmental impact on the local community. The collection consists of paintings, paper and prints of more than 200 young and mid-career artists from Sub-Saharan African countries.

Considering the need for more access to opportunities, ARAK’s new fellowship programs were created to have a positive impact on the creative ecosystems of Sub-Saharan countries, and to be relevant and diverse. The program support artists as innovative visual arts thinkers and producers, curators as visionaries that think of new ways to bring art to the audiences and promote engagement, and art writers as the creators of new worlds and new ways to look at the world, art, culture, and life in general.

Curatorial Residency: The Residency Fellowship Program was created to support ARAK Collection’s Mission of developing and supporting young and mid-career artists and curators through promoting curatorial research, the publication and exhibitions of their collection’s works. The exhibitions developed and produced by ARAK Collection aspire to be impactful and are all associated with relevant public programming. The ARAK Collection Annual Residency Fellowship Program aims to promote a better knowledge and understanding of Contemporary Sub-Saharan Art in the Middle East and Beyond through research of the extensive works that form part of its collection.

The resident guest curator is expected to research the collection with the intention of curating an exhibition and writing the exhibition catalogue at the end of the residency period, after in-depth research and the submission of a curatorial concept to be approved by the ARAK Collection Curatorial Advisory Committee. Each Fellowship Grant is approximately USD 20,000. The grant includes USD 5000 for research expenses and fees and USD 15,000 to produce the exhibition and publish the catalogue.

Art Writing & Publishing: The Art Writing & Publishing Program is targeted at interested Art Writers, Academics, Critics and Intellectuals that have a publication project they would like to collaborate on or develop with ARAK Collection. Art writers (used broadly) may propose reference-level publishable projects for ARAK Collection to Publish under its Publishing Umbrella activities.

If you have any idea that you believe the current publishing Sub-Saharan Art panorama is missing, either new or something you have been working on, you may submit it for consideration. If your idea collects the ARAK Curatorial Advisory Committee consensual approval, it will be selected for development and ultimately publishing.

Artist Commission: Annually the Committee makes several research and fact-finding trips to Sub-Saharan Africa to encounter artists in their production context and exchange ideas about ways their artwork can complement the current ARAK Collection outlook and catalogue. If you are an artist with a working studio, you can send your contact and address of your art studio to be added it to the Artists Studio Map and Database at ARAK Collection.

Artists that are working in new and innovative artworks are invited to submit applications for the annual Artist Commission. If an artist requires funds for the production of a specific artwork series or artwork and needs support, the fund for Artist Commission can support towards developing and producing the work. The final objective is to add an artwork to the ARAK Collection through a direct commission or support to artwork or series that the artist needs funding for.

For more information regarding applications for the ARAK Collection Fellowship Programs, visit

Maliza Kiasuwa (1975), Untitled (Today is yesterday, part 2), Mixed Media, 42 x 30cm



Back Story | Collin Sekajugo ( Uganda, 1980-) Mixed media – Polypropylene, paint, photo, canvas 140 x cm


Lizette Chirrime (Mozambique 1973), The Fluid Dauce, Dressed in Red, Print on archival paper, 76 x 56cm

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