Have you seen this artsy mural in Abu Dhabi?

By Eudore R. Chand

ABU DHABI 22 December 2019: As part of the recently launched ‘For Abu Dhabi’ initiative, the Department of Municipalities and Transport (DMT), has unveiled a new piece of large-scale commissioned artwork at Marsa Al Bateen.

The mural, painted by world-renowned Brazilian muralist Eduardo Kobra, depicts faces from a variety of ethnicities that represent the diversity of the nation and embodies the moral values of tolerance, respect and peace amongst all cultures in the UAE. Kobra’s creative expression resulted in a wall painting, featuring an array of bright colours and bold lines, while exemplifying his famous signature kaleidoscopic theme.

Kobra’s work comes as the first in a series of artwork installations done by international artists to enhance the streets of Abu Dhabi as part of the ‘For Abu Dhabi’ initiative. A key factor to this liveability initiative is the connection and collaboration between local and international artists, with the creative aim of producing city-wide public art which further reinforces Abu Dhabi as a hub for creativity and expression, as well as a place of rich cultural diversity.

Mohamed Al Khadar, Executive Director of the Strategic Affairs Sector at DMT, said, “With the commencement of our Ghadan 21 efforts, the ‘For Abu Dhabi’ initiative strives to bring a new lease of excitement to the community. This particular artwork is unique in nature, and is an outlier in the art realm of public murals; at more than 2,000m2 and 14 metres high, it’s the largest of its kind in the region.”

“Kobra’s stunning artwork comes as one part of ‘For Abu Dhabi’s city-wide activation to create contemporary artistic landmarks across the city. By bringing world famous artists to the Emirate, we will foster an atmosphere which encourages creative expression and is in alignment with our moral values,” he added.

The DMT executive went on to say, “The launch of this culturally significant and everlasting art piece is a great example of how Abu Dhabi government entities are dedicated to working in cohesion to provide long-term solutions to community betterment. The Tolerance mural was created in collaboration with the Department of Community Development, DCD, as the images were selected from their brand image portraits of Abu Dhabi. In upcoming ‘For Abu Dhabi’ artworks, we look forward to bringing local and international artists together to work in cohesion to bring more buildings and streets alive through the expression of creativity.”

world-renowned Brazilian muralist Eduardo Kobra

Kobra shared his inspiration behind the mural, and what it meant to partake in ‘For Abu Dhabi’ initiative by stating, “In order to celebrate the Year of Tolerance, we used images of real people – citizens living here in Abu Dhabi – who represent Abu Dhabi’s essence of rich cultural diversity, tolerance for all people and peace and togetherness.”

“Abu Dhabi is a unique place, where I have learned a lot about the culture and the wide variety of different nationalities, ethnicities and religions that call the UAE home. My artwork here in Al Bateen represents just that. It doesn’t matter where you’re from or what you look like, you will find tolerance, respect and peace within diversity,” he added.


‘For Abu Dhabi’ to enhance residents’ lifestyle