The art book Simulation City lets the reader see Dubai with new eyes

Dubai, in its newness, has redefined the notion of authenticity: city and spectacle have been intertwined. Mall culture, airports, and theme parks may seem strange and vacuous in other cities, but in Dubai, they are the essence of life. 

Shortly before the outbreak of the global pandemic, Dirk Gebhardt and Lars Harmsen visited Dubai. Nowhere in the world had they seen drama and comedy so powerfully together as in Dubai’s theme parks. In the drive to bring more tourists to the UAE, develop the real estate industry, and retain a huge labor force of expatriate workers, Dubai itself resembles and operates in many ways like a theme park.

In his essay Simulation City: The Theming of Dubai Jason Carlow explores the uncanny atmosphere of spectacle, spatial control, and remarkable societal and cultural overlaps and adjacencies that have become an integral part of life for many residents of and visitors to contemporary Dubai.


  • Publisher Slanted Publishers
  • Editor Dirk Gebhardt, Jason Carlow, Lars Harmsen
  • Text Jason Carlow
  • Photographer Dirk Gebhardt
  • Design Lars Harmsen
  • Release July 2022
  • Format in cm (w × h × d) 21 × 28 cm
  • Volume 172 pages
  • Language English
  • Workmanship thread-stitching with black thread, Swiss brochure
  • ISBN 978-3-948440-36-7

For more information make sure to check out Slanted Publishers website.

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