"It's a huge challenge but a lot fun," says art aficionado Minna Joseph about her popular initiative Art Nights. The gorgeous lady is as into art as she is into fashion and is a great ambassador of both!
Style comes easily to Minna. So does love for art. The Gallery Director of DIFC's Ayyam Gallery, Minna Joseph promotes artistic talent as well as she does fashion. Her Art Nights at the gallery have become quite an exciting event on Dubai's social calendar. And as the brand ambassador of the online retail store Shopbop, she puts style matters on the fore front for fashion followers. Charming and effervescent, Minna tells Masala! how she balances the two fields and why "being happy" is on top of her priority list.
What made you associate with Ayyam Gallery?
I've always admired Ayyam Gallery and the way it has progressed and help shape the contemporary Middle Eastern art scene. Ayyam represents some of my favourite artists with some amazing stories. So when the opportunity came to join them at their new outpost at DIFC in 2010, I knew I couldn't let it go. They are a fantastic team and the partners are like family.
What is your role at the gallery and how do you like it?
My role includes managing the gallery's DIFC space, its art fairs, media communication and public relation needs. I've also developed Art Nights, a quarterly arts-focused initiative at the DIFC Gate Village, which combines art, film, design, music and cuisine though a variety of indoor and outdoor activities. It's a huge challenge but a lot of fun because I get a chance to meet so many interesting people and ideas.
I put the programme together for Art Nights, which includes obtaining all the exhibition information from the galleries, sourcing the artists, special events, entertainment and catering. One of the key roles also includes finding sponsors and partners for each season.
In 2012, you were appointed the Style Ambassador for New York-based online fashion retailer, Shopbop. Can you tell us more about that?
Shopbop is the best retailer for women's fashion and I've always loved how easy it was to order from them with free deliveries worldwide. They were scouting for ambassadors to represent them in the region. I was delighted to be selected amongst a couple of other women from the region. They have a fab online store; I was thrilled to be one of their ambassadors.
Where do you see yourself and Ayyam Gallery in another 10 years?
I see a long career path with Ayyam Gallery; they are family. I want to be part of its continued progress. The gallery partners are so inspirational, and a pleasure to work with.
What are your hobbies?
I have a mini zoo at home with a dog, cat, two birds and a tortoise. I love interacting with animals, and in my case, preventing them from attacking each other! I also enjoy travelling and discovering about cultures and places, it broadens my mind to new experiences. And I also enjoy a little sewing. Am I sounding like a sweet little old lady? (laughs).
Can you tell us more about your interest in fashion?
I love fashion but not in the sense of following trends and seasons. I just find fashion a great way to experiment, be creative and just completely express myself.
What are your personal and future goals?
On top of my list is to be happy. Surrounding myself with positive people and constantly progressing and striving to push the limits are my priority. For now, I'm getting into fitness andlove to be able to run a full marathon!
How did it feel being part of the region's most coveted Best Dressed list?
I was really happy. Being put amongst some seriously gorgeous and stylish women. It was a lot of fun shooting the photographs for the feature. Interacting with their editors and stylists was the best part.