The inaugural edition of the Islamic Arts Biennale in Jeddah has been extended until May 23, 2023

Originally set to close on April 23, the event is hosted at the Hajj Terminal of the King Abdulaziz International Airport in Jeddah under the theme of “Awwal Bait,” meaning “First House” in reference to the Holy Ka’bah in Makkah.

In a released statement, Aya AlBakree, CEO of the Diriyah Biennale Foundation, said: “As the Diriyah Biennale Foundation it is our ambition to create cultural experiences that nurture cultural expression and fosters cultural exchange. The response to the first-ever Islamic Arts Biennale has left us feeling humbled and honored.  The positive reception from our local, regional and international audiences and the popularity of the exhibition made an extension a natural step and we would like to take this opportunity to encourage those who have yet to visit to take this immersive, multi-sensory journey through the past, present and future of the Islamic Arts. For repeat visitors, there will be an engaging line up of public programming during the additional month to discover newer dimensions associated with Islamic Arts.”  

The event features work by more than 40 artists from around the world, over 50 new commissions, 280 artefacts and over 15 never-before-exhibited artefacts across four galleries, two pavilions and an outdoor space. 

The biennale opened on Jan. 23 and has since welcomed 390,000 visitors, including the likes of Queen Rania of Jordan, the Archbishop of Vienna Cardinal Dr. Christoph Schönbrunn, Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Hajj and Umrah Dr. Tawfiq bin Fawzan Al-Rabiah and French footballer Patrice Evra.