The Katara Traditional Dhow Festival has become a melting pot of artistic talent and skills, bringing together a number of visual artists in Doha and showcasing their works in an atmosphere that reflect Qatar’s rich history and culture. Speaking to Gulf Times on Thursday, Russian artist and Qatar Fine Arts Society member Kristina al-Adwan said the festival provides a suitable location for painting as it reflects Qatar’s rich history and culture. 
“Apart from having a gallery, people can also see our paintings and how we paint, the different techniques that artists apply, some use pencil, oil, charcoal and pastel, while some prefer acrylic,” she said. The artist, who has been participating in many events and exhibitions in Qatar, highlighted the vital role of the annual festival not only to showcase their works but also to further enhance their skills.
“I’m trying to improve my level in this direction. I love the sea, I love dhows because I feel that there is something unique in them – a deep-rooted connection between the Qatari people and their past – and that I think is very important,” said al-Adwan, who is also showcasing her works on Instagram.
Dhows, she stressed, remained her emblematic subject for the past five years and hopes to produce similar paintings in the coming years. About the festival, she described it as “a very interesting event – a journey from the past to present because we can see rich traditions and many details on how it was in the old times.”
The 10th edition of the festival, taking place at the Katara beach until tomorrow (December 5), is featuring an array of marine activities and competitions, workshops, attractions, and exhibitions of a wide range of maritime collections, among others.
In a press statement, Katara–the Cultural Village stressed that the festival adheres to the health and safety protocols set by the Ministry of Public Health to prevent the spread of coronavirus (Covid-19). These include mandatory wearing of masks, checking of Ehteraz mobile app, and social distancing, in addition to distributing sanitisers to visitors and participants.
Al-Adwan lauded Qatari institutions such as Katara for “giving a lot of attention to artists and the arts”, which makes the art scene in Doha even vibrant despite the many challenges. The festival will be open to visitors today (Friday) from 1pm to 11pm and from 10am to 10pm tomorrow (Saturday), according to Katara.
Besides heritage pavilions from Qatar, Iraq, Kuwait, Oman, Tanzania and India, Katara noted that the festival is also highlighting “some of the finest, ancient and modern jewels, including pearls” at the Al Majid jewellery pavilion.
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