The Salsali Private Museum (SPM), home to the private collection of art patron Ramin Salsali, opened its doors to the public and collectors on 13 November 2011 in Al Quoz, Dubai. Salsali is also the curator of the museum’s inaugural exhibition, aptly titled “Show Off!”

Jonathan Meese, "SAALKONDITOREI "STOFFWECHSEL de LOLLYLOLLYLOLLY", 2008, oil and mixed media on canvas, 270 x 360.6 x 4.3 cm.

Salsali, a consultant for the petrochemical industry and patron of the arts, is helping to revolutionise the art landscape in Dubai. By adopting the concept of a private museum where none of the works are for sale, he is just one of a group of international collectors who are changing the way they display their collections. Reports,

…Ramin’s goal is to share his passion for art. The lack of knowledge about the Middle Eastern art world among visitors was one of the factors that made Salsali decide to found this museum. ‘I came to a point where I had to decide what I should do with my collection,’ he says. ‘Should I keep it for myself or show it to a wider public? And then it was a question that I wanted to show it, but there wasn’t space for me to show it.’

You can view the promotional video for “Show Off!” below or on YouTube.


Collection and objective of museum

The museum is not only a home to Ramin Salsali’s collection; Salsali hopes to offer it up as a platform through which collectors can meet and exchange ideas. A section of the museum has been dedicated to showcasing the private collections of other collectors. Salsali’s own collection consists of over 300 works by Iranian, Middle Eastern and European artists.

Middle Eastern/Iranian artists

Inside the Salsali Private Museum in Dubai, UAE.

International artists

From the exhibition "Show Off!" on at Salsali Private Museum in Dubai until January 2012. Image courtesy Salsali Private Museum; photo credit: James Harvey.

Ramin Salsali: patron of the arts

Salsali has been recognised as Patron of the Arts for the last two consecutive years, by HRH Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai. His contribution to the arts in the region was also recognised by Salem Belyouha, director of projects at the Dubai Culture and Arts Authority, who said that “the inauguration of Mr Salsali’s art museum signifies how creative ventures play an instrumental role in energising the arts scene.”

Max Scheler, 'Farah Diba and Reza Pahlavi, Tehran, 1967', gelatin silver print, 107 x 75 cm.

The new museum is located on Al Serkal Avenue, Street 8, Al Quoz, Dubai. “Show Off!”, the museum’s inaugural exhibition, runs until 14 January 2012.


Related Topics: acquisitions, museum shows, art collectors, venues for art in the UAE

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By Brittney

Brittney is a writer, curator and contemporary art gallerist. Born in Singapore and based in New York City, Brittney maintains a deep interest in the contemporary art landscape of Southeast Asia. This is combined with an equally strong interest in contemporary art from the Asian diasporas, alongside the issues of identity, transmigration and global relations.

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