Arts & Culture

Abu Dhabi’s Hip-Hop exhibition has been extended

You have one more month to view the critically acclaimed Hip-Hop exhibition in the capital. 

Manarat Al Saadiyat in collaboration with the region’s leading cultural and lifestyle platform, Sole, has announced the extension of the CONTACT HIGH: A Visual History of Hip-Hop exhibition until 30 June 2021.

Showing outside of the United States for the first time, CONTACT HIGH takes visitors through four decades of photographs, albums, magazine covers, and memorabilia documenting Hip-Hop culture. The exhibition features over 150 images by over 60 photographers including Janette Beckman, Barron Claiborne, Jorge Peniche, Joe Conzo, Martha Cooper, Jamel Shabazz and Danny Clinch. Photographs are displayed alongside the original contact sheets, providing an intimate look into the photographer’s journey during the shoot and insight into the personality of the subject in front of the camera. The images portray some of Hip-Hop’s biggest names, such as Kanye West, Cardi B, Jay-Z, Kendrick Lamar, Megan Thee Stallion, M.F. Doom, Nas, Snoop Dogg, Aaliyah, A$AP Rocky, Tyler the Creator, Queen Latifah, Salt-N-Pepa, and the legendary Notorious B.I.G. 

Hip-Hop exhibition

CONTACT HIGH is curated by journalist Vikki Tobak, writer of the bestselling book of the same name. The exhibition’s Creative Director is Hip-Hop visual artist and filmmaker Fab 5 Freddy, and its Producer is Joseph Patel. 

Vikki Tobak, Curator of CONTACT HIGH, commented, “Hip-Hop is a uniquely American cultural force that grew out of Black and Brown communities to have a long and lasting impact on people all over the world. This first opportunity to bring these photographs chronicling Hip-Hop history to the global stage is an important one. I am especially pleased to bring the exhibition to the United Arab Emirates, where the music and culture are thriving. Given Abu Dhabi’s generous support for the arts and our incredible experiences with the Sole team, we are thrilled to bring CONTACT HIGH to Manarat Al Saadiyat.” 

Hip-Hop exhibition

Joshua Cox, Partner at Sole, commented, “For those of us who grew up with Hip-Hop, seeing a museum level retrospective come to life is a dream come true. The artists we listened to had a profound impact on our lives, and it’s through the foresight of our featured photographers that we get a view into that world. The images in this show invoke nostalgia and inspire optimism for the future of the genre. We are truly grateful to Vikki Tobak for trusting us to bring her vision to Abu Dhabi and to the Manarat Al Saadiyat team for their support, confidence, and continued support for the arts.” 

Hip-Hop exhibition

The exhibition is open daily, from 10am to 8pm. Tickets for CONTACT HIGH are priced at AED 30 and will be available through Virgin Megastore Ticketing. 

GO: Visit for more information.

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David Tapley - Editor-in-Chief
As the editor-in-chief for one of the region’s most fiercely local lifestyle publications, David Tapley is a self-proclaimed Hip-Hop aficionado, championing all things, food, travel, street art, and streetwear across the UAE and KSA.

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