About NBF

National Bank of Fujairah is one of the most well-respected corporate banks in the UAE and is renowned for its award-winning services. NBF offers a wide range of banking and financial services, while maintaining a strong commitment to social responsibility and current global issues. This philosophy inspired the NBF Art Prize, which celebrates the nation’s emerging art scene while also serving as a platform to raise awareness, encourage dialogue, and instill a sense of responsibility within our society.

This nationwide initiative invites artists to share their artistic expression and unique perspective in the form of artwork in response to a compelling theme or topic. NBF believes that art has the power to inspire significant changes in the world.

Art as a medium for change


This competition forms part of our commitment to ESG (Environmental Social and Governance) principles, by empowering the nation’s emerging art scene. NBF believes in the transformative power of art and its ability to start conversations and inspire change. Through this initiative, we aim to nurture the UAE’s creative industry and inspire collective action towards a better future.

By promoting the nation's emerging art scene, we are demonstrating our commitment to ESG (Environmental, Social, and Governance) values. NBF believes in the transformational power of art, as well as its potential to spark dialogue and promote change. We hope to nurture the UAE's creative industry and encourage collaborative action toward a brighter future through this effort.


NBF Art 2023

The theme for NBF Art 2023, 'Time is Now,' emphasized the importance of addressing global sustainability. It served as a strong call to action, highlighting the unsustainable rate at which we consume natural resources and the importance of taking steps towards environmental change.

While progress has been made in areas such as renewable energy, sanitation, recycling, and forest management, it is crucial to take immediate action towards sustainable change.

We thank all the artists who trusted us and submitted their works for the NBF Art Prize 2023.

The project emphasized the importance of taking immediate action toward green, sustainable living.


Submission guidelines


Who can apply

The NBF Art Prize welcomes applications from all emerging artists who are 18 years of age or older and residents of the UAE.

  • A valid UAE Emirates ID will be required to claim your prize.


Use the theme as a guide

Artists are welcome to showcase their artwork, using the theme as a starting point. The theme for NBF Art Prize 2023 was centered around global sustainability to inspire new perspectives, prompt environmental change, and inspire action toward a better future.


What to submit

Share your unique perspective in the medium of your choice, including:

  • Painting
  • Sculpture
  • Drawing
  • Digital art


How to enter

Artists are invited to submit their artworks through the official NBF Art website once the open call for the 2024 project commences. 


Artwork evaluation

The Selection Committee guarantees that all entries are evaluated fairly by carefully reviewing and scoring them based on predefined technical criteria. From this process, the top ten (10) finalists had been shortlisted. The top three winning artists had the opportunity to engage in individual mentorship sessions with the distinguished judges, who were well-known figures in the UAE Art community.


Prizes & Recognitions

Artists had unlocked their artistic potential and competed for incredible rewards, exclusive mentorship, and recognition in the world of creativity!

  • 1st Place: AED 10,000
  • 2nd Place: AED 5,000
  • 3rd Place: AED 3,000
  • Top 3 winning artists received a mentoring session with the esteemed judges.
  • Top 10 artworks were displayed at a renowned art venue and also displayed on the NBF website.
  • Top 10 creative artworks received the 'Most Creative Artwork of the Year' certificate, which was endorsed by the judges.

Judges of
NBF Art 2023


Patricia Millns FRSA

Artist, Advisor Creative Industries

Patricia Millns is a world-renowned artist and served as a founding pioneer of the UAE's contemporary art movement. She was named a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (FRSA) in London, as well as the International Association of Art Critics (IAPA) and UNESCO, for her work.

Her artistic quest began with Islamic art and design and progressed to a thorough examination of symbolism, women's studies, and cultural heritage. She is now working on design projects that emphasise the importance of regional culture. Her art has been shown in notable places worldwide, including the British Museum in London, the United Nations in New York, and the Carousel De Louvre in Paris.

Khalil Abdulwahid

Director Fine Arts, Dubai Culture and Arts Authority

Khalil Abdulwahid is a renowned artist who began his artistic career under the tutelage of the late Emirati artist Hassan Sharif. Khalil's work has been shown in group exhibits bot locally and abroad, including prominent events such as FotoFest International's 'View from Inside' and the National Museum of Denmark's 'Sharjah: Art from the Emirates'. He has also contributed to the annual exhibitions organised by the Emirates Fine Arts Society. In addition to his artistic endeavors, Khalil teaches and is presently the Visual Arts Manager at Dubai Culture. He is actively involved in a variety of projects that support the UAE's creative community.


Aisha Alabbar

Photographer & Gallery Owner

Aisha Alabbar is the founder of Aisha Alabbar Gallery, one of the first Emirati-led galleries focused on modern and contemporary Emirati, local, and regional artists. The gallery seeks to further the practices of emerging and established artists, who are the inspiration for the gallery’s diverse range of programming.

Aisha Alabbar Gallery now takes pioneering Emirati artists as its central focus, while also providing a platform for young, emerging local artists based in the Gulf. Working with a diverse range of contemporary artists and creating a multi-faceted programme, Aisha Alabbar seeks to contribute to a local arts ecosystem that is open and welcoming, prioritising engagement of diverse audiences with rigorous and timely exhibitions. In the future, she looks forward to promoting the work of the gallery’s represented artists internationally.

Ahmad Alrashid


Ahmad is an emerging gallerist, curator, and creative manager who has made significant contributions to the art scene in the UAE in a very short time. As the host of the Talkative With Ahmad creative podcast, he brings his expertise and passion for art to a wider audience. With a diverse background in gallery direction, curation of highly praised exhibitions, and creative entrepreneurship, Ahmad has accumulated a wealth of experience in the realms of brand management, luxury, and art.

His journey has taken him across various international art hubs, including Kuwait, Milan, Italy, Amsterdam, London, and Dubai. In each of these cities, he has left his mark through his innovative approach to showcasing and promoting art. As a gallerist, Ahmad has demonstrated a keen eye for talent, curating exhibitions that captivate audiences and push boundaries.


Congratulations to the winners of the NBF Art Prize 2023!

To all the talented artists who participated, your creative expressions have been a source of inspiration and a catalyst for change. Your commitment to addressing global sustainability through art is commendable. We thank you for your participation.

Artist Testimonials

Discover the diverse world of artistry as our talented artists share their NBF ART journey, spanning a wide range of creative mediums. Get inspired by their stories, passion, and dedication.

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