Close this search box.
Close this search box.

Sotheby’s Is Transforming London Into the Middle East This Summer With ‘Hafla’

Exhibitions and events celebrating the culture of the Middle East

This summer, as Arabs from all over the Gulf make their annual pilgrimage to London, Sotheby’s on New Bond Street is set to transform into a hotspot for Middle Eastern culture with the first ever “Hafla,” an almost month-long celebration of Arab culture. From Aug. 12 to 30, each of Sotheby’s galleries will host a distinct facet of the Middle East, transforming the space via art, fashion, film, and more. 

Visitors are invited to discover over 50 artworks from Saudi Arabia spanning half a century, from paintings to sculptures to installations curated in collaboration with Qaswra Hafez, the visionary founder of Hafez Gallery in Jeddah. 

Also on view is a selection of 60 remarkable jewelry pieces  courtesy of A2Z Advisory Bahrain, featuring colored gemstones, diamonds, and iconic works from leading maison. 

Elsewhere, guests can dive into the tradition of Islamic calligraphy– from the earliest Qur’anic manuscripts in Kufic script to the opulent illuminations of the Qajar period–  in an exhibition tracing the evolution of calligraphic arts from the 8th to the 21st century.

There’s something for fashion lovers too. Princess Nourah Al Faisal’s limited-edition handbags, inspired by Saudi Arabia’s cultural heritage, will also be displayed during the festival. Each of the five designs, created in collaboration with Asprey and her brand Nuun, pays homage to a different region of the Kingdom, showcasing its diversity through vibrant colors, motifs, and embroidery techniques. 

In addition to exhibitions, the event  will host a series of events, from panel discussions to guided tours, immersing visitors in the rich history and contemporary culture of the Middle East. Even the café will transform, offering a menu inspired by the region’s flavors, turning a simple visit into a sensory journey. For more information, visit

Share this article

Related stories