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Contemporary works from the United Arab Emirates to highlight L.A. Art Show

Contemporary works from the United Arab Emirates to highlight L.A. Art Show
The United Arab Emirates has a thriving art scene, which will be celebrated at next year's L.A. Art Show. (Charles Crowell / Bloomberg)

The United Arab Emirates has been designated the "featured guest country" at the 2015 L.A. Art Show, scheduled for Jan. 14-18 at the Los Angeles Convention Center.

A special exhibition,"Past Forward: Contemporary Art from the Emirates" will mark the first major exhibition of contemporary Emirati art to tour the U.S. It is made up of more than 50 works of art by 25 Emirati artists.

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The exhibition was initially launched in May in Washington, D.C,. by the UAE Embassy and the Meridian International Center.

Meanwhile, the UAE has ambitious plans to establish itself as a cultural tourism destination.

A Louvre Abu Dhabi designed by Jean Nouvel is under construction and scheduled to be finished next year. A Guggenheim museum designed by architect Frank Gehry is also under construction in Abu Dhabi and is scheduled for completion in 2017.

Both institutions are being built on Saadiyat Island along with a number of other cultural institutions, all intended to cater to international tourism. The city hopes the island will become its cultural center by 2020.

After a selection of the works from "Past Forward" is displayed at the L.A. Art Show, the entire exhibition will travel to the Fowler Museum at UCLA for five weeks, beginning Jan. 25.

Follow me on Twitter @jessicagelt

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