Art Jameel, which aims to foster and promote a thriving arts and culture scene within the Middle East, North Africa and Turkey region and beyond, and to support the development of creative enterprises, today announced the appointment of Antonia Carver as its Director.

Antonia will take up the post in August 2016 and will be responsible for leading all of Art Jameel’s initiatives, furthering and strengthening existing partnerships with leading institutions such as the Victoria & Albert Museum in London and the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. Antonia will also work with the existing team to grow and expand Art Jameel’s activities and reach into new categories, cementing its position as a world-class platform that helps bridge the gap between cultures through art.

“We are pleased to announce Antonia as our first Art Jameel Director, which reflects the exciting ambitions we have for the organization. This newly created position is designed to further broaden Art Jameel’s existing partnerships around the world, form new ones, and explore new global initiatives to support contemporary arts and culture,” said Fady Jameel, President of Community Jameel International. “With Antonia’s in-depth regional and global experience, she’s the ideal person for this role and we are thrilled to have her on board.”

The arts scenes of the Middle East and South Asia are at a particular juncture, better-recognized than they’ve ever been internationally, and gaining an ever-more crucial role regionally. “I feel Art Jameel’s mandate, and its focus on enriching, connecting and further educating regional talent, is crucial and has such huge potential. This, complimented by the wider Community Jameel efforts in promoting positive social and economic sustainability, through job creation initiatives and fostering entrepreneurship, is inspirational” said Antonia. “I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to work with Art Jameel to build new institutions, devise publishing projects and educational initiatives, and work with renowned international partners to deliver programs that directly benefit and impact on artists, writers, curators and arts communities in the region.”

Antonia has been the Director of Art Dubai for six years. In her role, she has overseen the organization’s development into the leading international fair for the Middle East and South Asia, and the world’s most global art fair. She has been responsible for Art Dubai’s diverse program, which includes three gallery exhibition halls; specialized collector and curator programs; artists’ residencies and commissions; and the Abraaj Group Art Prize; as well as a raft of educational initiatives, including the community school Campus Art Dubai.

Based in the UAE since 2001, Antonia has written extensively, often on Middle Eastern art and film as a correspondent for The Art Newspaper and Screen International, among other publications, and edited several books and journals. In 2004, she took on a role at Bidoun, a Middle Eastern art and culture magazine, as an editor and later became the director of the Middle Eastern arts organization’s projects division, co-organizing education programs, artists’ projects, film and video series. Antonia played a role in establishing and curating the Dubai International Film Festival as a member of its programming committee (2004-2014), and has also acted as an Arab and Iranian film specialist for the Edinburgh International Film Festival.

Prior to moving to the UAE, Antonia was based in London, UK where she served a number of roles, including as an editor at Phaidon Press, a British publisher of books on the visual arts. She also worked in development and projects at the Institute of International Visual Arts (Iniva), and in publishing at G+B Arts International.