Connect with Dubai Italia Experiences

Sign up our newsletter

Get more inspiration, tips and exclusive itineraries in Dubai

Oblong Contemporary Art Gallery

text Francesca Lombardi

January 15, 2024

Oblong Contemprary Art Gallery, a cultural bridge between Italy and the Emirates

An Italian art gallery primarily engaged in the promotion of contemporary art

Oblong Contemporary Art Gallery has branches in Forte dei Marmi and Dubai. The gallery’s founders Emanuela Venturini and Paola Marucci are both Italian and grew up immersed in the Italian art scene; sculpture is in their genes. “Emanuela and I founded the gallery. We shared an unbridled passion for art, albeit with different training. Emanuela is an architect with long experience in interior design and a sensitivity towards art and artists. I come from the world of economics, but when I moved to Pietrasanta in Tuscany (a global hub for artistic production, close to the famous Carrara white marble quarries and the well-known seaside town of Forte dei Marmi in Versilia, where the gallery is based, ed.), I got into sculpture and the art world, and over time I adjusted my skills to the creative context all around me”, says Paola Marcucci, recalling the early days.

Oblong Contemporary Art Gallery

In addition to sculpture, Paola and Emanuela are also passionate about intercultural exchange, which forms the basis of their gallery’s philosophy: “We love supporting international artists (like Jimenez Deredia, Gustavo Velez, Stefano Bombardieri) and talented youngsters (Seerero Pop Art, Roberta Diazzi) whose various techniques are helping to enrich our artistic output”. To follow Forte dei Marmi, in 2019 the gallery opened on Bluewaters Island, Dubai, with the aim of bringing Italian and Emirate culture together via an ideological bridge that can connect ideas and artistic expression.

Oblong Contemporary Art Gallery

“The language of art is universal, and through art it has always been easy to bring people together”, the gallery owners explain enthusiastically. “Culture minimises all differences between people, fills gaps and makes us closer. When you look at a painting or a sculpture, you can understand its meaning and interpretation, even when the artist speaks a different language”. And it is precisely through art that two regions - the Middle East and Europe - have the opportunity for considerable cultural exchange: “Collectors are attracted by works that arouse emotions”, Paola explains. “I’m a gallerist, but I’m also a collector. I know that when you find yourself in front of a work of art you feel an irresistible attraction that gets into your heart and your soul. In that sense I believe clients from the Middle East and Europe are the same, there’s no difference”. There is no denying the interest that Italian art arouses, with its constant presence that begins in the Middle Ages and then explodes with the Renaissance. A Made in Italy business that combines roots and research: “What Oblong is trying to showcase and build on is the Italian tradition of producing and working with marble and bronze, which is typical of many Italian cities, including Pietrasanta and Carrara, where the marble quarries are, and these processes conceal fascinating and unique stories behind thousands of pieces of art, but also artisanship”.

You may be interested


Connect with Dubai Italia Experiences