Home Art and Culture Ahmad Al Awadhi – A Prominent Figure of the Emirati Art Scene

Ahmad Al Awadhi – A Prominent Figure of the Emirati Art Scene

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Ahmad Al Awadhi – A Prominent Figure of the Emirati Art Scene
Rukni's art from the ongoing exhibition at the Living Art Mall Dubai

Ahmad Al Awadhi, known in the art community as Rukni, is a prominent Emirati artist dedicated to preserving and promoting the rich cultural heritage of the UAE

Article / Photo by Ana S. Gad

Ahmad Al Awadhi, known in the art community as Rukni, is a prominent Emirati artist dedicated to preserving and promoting the rich cultural heritage of the UAE. At 63, he is a familiar face at art exhibitions and events, balancing his time as a businessman by day and an artist by night. His journey into the art world began at a young age, but it wasn’t until his 40s that he publicly showcased his work, thanks to the encouragement of a friend.

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Ahmad Al Awadhi Rukni – Photo Gulf News

Rukni’s art captures the essence of traditional UAE life, from the intricate architecture of old bayts to desert landscapes and cultural symbols like coffee pots and lanterns. Over time, his style has evolved to include vibrant pop art portraits of iconic figures such as Frida Kahlo, Al Pacino, and Sheikh Zayed. His dedication to his craft is evident as he often spends nights painting, inspired by classical music.

Artist-UAEOne of his most notable pieces is a portrait of Pope Francis and the Grand Imam of Al Azhar, created during their historic meeting in Abu Dhabi as part of the UAE’s Year of Tolerance in 2019. This artwork now adorns the Ministry of Tolerance’s office, symbolizing the nation’s commitment to harmony and understanding.

His efforts peak around UAE National Day, when he participates in nationwide exhibitions and live painting sessions, showcasing his work and celebrating the country’s legacy.

Published under the International Cooperation Protocol with The AsiaNi (Arabic) Seoul, South Korea 

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Read: Sharjah Art Museum a beacon of cultural enlightenment

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