After Rain? with the Diriyah Biennale Foundation’s Advisory Committee: Sara Binladen, Antonia Carver, Raneem Zaki Farsi, Akram Zaatari, moderated by Rafal Niemojewski

At the closing of the Biennale, the members of the Advisory Committee gather to reflect upon the process of making the second edition of the Diriyah Contemporary Art Biennale. What do we take away in terms of their wishes for this edition? What did we learn? And what follows After Rain?


Sara Binladen

Sara Binladen is an art patron, collector and a founding member of the Saudi Arts Council (SAC), 2013-2022. She co-led the Education and Hospitality Committees for the 2139 Jeddah Art and initiated the first edition of Jeddah Photo, amongst other initiatives. She currently serves on several international museum committees, including the International Council of the Tate; the Contemporary and Modern Middle Eastern Art acquisition group of the British Museum, and is the founder and chair of the Middle East Acquisitions Committee of Centre Pompidou. In addition to her role as an arts patron, Sara has supported a range of art publications, residencies, exhibitions, and art commissions, while developing her own collection of international contemporary art.

Antonia Carver

Antonia Carver is the Director of Art Jameel and leads the teams in both Saudi Arabia and the UAE, overseeing programs across the arts, heritage, and education. She joined in 2016 with a mandate to develop the Jameel Arts Centre, Dubai, and Hayy: Creative Hub, Jeddah, instituting a new period of radical growth for the organization. Among other roles, Antonia was previously Director of Art Dubai (2010–2016) and Projects Director at Bidoun. She has written extensively on Middle Eastern art and film.

Raneem Zaki Farsi

Raneem Zaki Farsi is a curator, art advisor, and founder of AR Art Advisory. Farsi is a senior advisor to H.E Assistant Minister of Culture, and a Board member of the Museums Commission in Saudi Arabia. She is the co-artistic director of Desert X AlUla, and sits on multiple panels and committees such as the Royal commission of AlUla and Diriyah Contemporary Art Biennale. Farsi has co-curated seminal exhibitions to the Saudi art scene such as the inaugural edition of Desert X Alula, “Light Upon Light” of Noor Riyadh, “Moallaqat” and “Past is Prologue” of 21,39 in Jeddah, and the Public Program for the inaugural edition of the Diriyah Contemporary Art Biennale.

Rafal Niemojewski

Rafal Niemojewski, PhD, is a cultural producer and scholar of contemporary art and its institutions. He has worked in the capacities of assistant and associate professor at Central Saint Martins, Sotheby’s Institute, and the Royal Institute of Art (Stockholm), and as course director at Chelsea College of Art and Design in London. Outside academia, Niemojewski has led projects for dOCUMENTA(13), Venice Biennale, Manifesta, Serpentine Gallery, Bergen Kunsthall, and held curatorial positions at the Hayward Gallery and Neuberger Museum of Art. In 2015 he became Director of the Biennial Foundation, a non-profit organization providing advocacy and thought leadership for the international arts community. Rafal Niemojewski chairs the Diriyah Biennale Foundation’s Advisory Committee.

Akram Zaatari

Akram Zaatari produces videos, installations of photographic material and books on a range of interconnected themes, subjects and practices related to excavation, political resistance, and the production and circulation of images in times of war. Zaatari has played a critical role in developing the formal, intellectual, and institutional infrastructure of Beirut’s contemporary art scene. As co-founder of the Arab Image Foundation, he has actively contributed to the discourse on the preservation of photographs and archival practice.