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Archive for February, 2010

Dubai Speed: Inside the Bubble

In the spring of 2007, Michael Schindhelm, the luckless former director of the Berlin Opera Foundation, left the German capital for better shores. As the newly appointed Cultural Director of Dubai’s Culture and Arts Authority, he had high hopes — as well as seemingly unlimited resources. His goal was to construct an exquisite cultural landscape, complete with an opera house and a Museum of World Cultures. Then came the financial crash, and arts and culture were no longer a priority. In his book ‘Dubai Speed’, Schindhelm chronicles his experiences in a city that embodies “not merely a race against time, but an objection to time itself”. While there is much narcissistic navel-gazing in Schindhelm’s book, reviewer Christiane Peitz still finds that, through Schindhelm’s gaze, the scintillating bubble that is Dubai becomes a bizarre reflection of modernity itself.