Hoor Al Qasimi established the Foundation in 2009 as a catalyst and advocate for the arts in Sharjah, UAE, as well as regionally and internationally. In 2003, Al Qasimi co-curated Sharjah Biennial 6 and has since continued as Biennial Director. Under Al Qasimi’s leadership, the Sharjah Biennial has become an internationally recognised platform for contemporary artists, curators and cultural producers. Her leadership in the field led to her election as President of the International Biennial Association (IBA) in 2017, an appointment that transferred IBA’s headquarters to Sharjah. Complementing her role at SAF, Al Qasimi also serves as the President of The Africa Institute and Chair of the Board for the Sharjah Architecture Triennial, which inaugurated its first edition in November 2019. Al Qasimi served as curator of the second Lahore Biennale, which opened in January 2020 across the city of Lahore, Pakistan.
Al Qasimi serves on the Board of Directors for MoMA PS1 in New York, USA; Kunst-Werke Berlin e. V. in Germany; and Ashkal Alwan in Beirut, Lebanon. She is the Chair of the Advisory Board for the College of Fine Arts and Design at the University of Sharjah and is a member of the advisory boards for Khoj International Artists’ Association, New Delhi, India and Darat al Funun, Amman, Jordan.
Currently, she serves as a member of the Prince Claus Award Committee (2016–present). She has previously served on the juries and prize panels for the PinchukArtCentre’s 5th edition of the Future Generation Art Prize (2019), Bonnefanten Award for Contemporary Art (2019), Maria Lassnig Prize (2017), Mediacity Seoul Prize (2016), Hepworth Wakefield Prize for Sculpture (2016), Berlin International Film Festival – Berlinale Shorts (2016), Videobrasil (2015), Dubai International Film Festival (2014) and Benesse Prize (2013).
Al Qasimi has an MA in curating contemporary art from the Royal College of Art, London, UK (2008). She holds a diploma in painting from the Royal Academy of Arts, London, UK (2005) and received her BFA from the Slade School of Fine Art, London, UK (2002).