Ithra Art Prize 2020

Ithra Art Prize 2020 Open for Submissions

Ithra Art Prize, the Middle East’s most prestigious prize for Saudi and Saudi-based contemporary artists, is accepting submissions for its 2020 edition. The deadline for submissions is October 20, 2019.

Following a complete review and deliberation by a prestigious jury, the winning artist will be announced in late 2019 and will receive up to SAR 375,000 ($100,000) to create a new commission. The selected art piece will debut at Art Dubai 2020 (March 25-28, 2020) before it joins previous winners as part of Ithra’s growing permanent art collection in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia.

The high-profile jury for the third edition of the Ithra Art Prize 2020, has been announced. The five jurors are as follows:
• Dr. Nada Shabout, Professor of Art History and Coordinator of the Contemporary Arab and Muslim Culture Studies Initiative (CAMCSI) in Texas.
• Tarek Abou El Fetouh, Independent curator and architect.
• Eiman Elgibreen, artist and Assistant Professor of Art History at the Princess Nourah University.
• Reem Fadda, Director of the Cultural Foundation, Abu Dhabi
• Maya El Khalil, Independent Curator and former Director at Athr Gallery in Jeddah.


  • Proposals must be submitted no later than October 20, 2019.
  • Proposals must be submitted online via the Ithra website.
  • Proposals received after the deadline will be automatically disqualified.

Eligibility Criteria

  • Applicants must originate from Saudi Arabia or be based in Saudi Arabia for at least 10 years.
  • Applicants must be over the age of 18.
  • Applications are accepted from individual artists as well as collectives and are limited to one artwork proposal per artist / collective.
  • The proposal should be for a new, original work, exclusive to Ithra and Art Dubai.
  • Proposals should not be part of an existing series of work (same idea, concept and methodology).
  • Applicants must submit all documents requested on the online application form.
  • Applicants that fail to comply with any of the criteria mentioned above will be automatically disqualified.

Proposal Submissions

  • Artists must submit their application through Ithra’s website. Physical proposals will not be considered.
  • Proposals must include a professional portfolio in PDF format with a minimum number of five artworks including captions, images and descriptions.
  • Proposals must include a biography listing education, and if applicable, previous exhibitions and awards.
  • Proposals must include:
    • Artwork concept
    • Artwork title
    • Artwork medium
    • Artwork dimensions and weight
    • Installation plan - detailed report of how to display the proposed artwork
    • Supporting visuals of the artwork (sketches/ images)
    • Production timeline - detailed project schedule including milestones for all weeks leading up to Art Dubai in March 2020
    • The production timeline should include any travel and research required, as well as details of the production and shipping to Dubai.


  • The proposed artwork should not be ephemeral (the physical status of the artwork shall be permanent and not to be displayed only once).
  • The work needs to be able to fit into crates and be transported to Ithra, where it will be part of Ithra’s permanent art collection.
  • The proposal must not exceed the dimensions (4m x 4m x 4m) and weight restrictions (500kg per square meter).
  • Artwork should be completed and shipped to Dubai in time for Art Dubai (March 25-28, 2020).

Artwork Budget

  • The proposal must consider a budget that does not exceed SAR 375,000 (US$ 100,000).
  • The proposal must include a detailed breakdown of the budget. The breakdown must consider all production costs, project management (including artist fee), insurance for all transportation, packing and unpacking in Dubai and in Dammam, as well as shipping from the point of origin to Art Dubai and from Art Dubai to Ithra.


The Ithra Art Prize will be adjudicated by a high-profile jury comprising individuals with strong connections to the Saudi, Arab and international art community.

The jury for this year’s Prize will be announced in August 2019.

 Apply now