The Sharjah Art Foundation, a cultural institution that emerged from the Sharjah Biennial, wanted to invest in non-museum spaces and simultaneously reclaim historic links to the city centre. Five dilapidated buildings in the Al Mureijah neighbourhood offered the perfect urban and architectural setting for a contemporary art venue. Now renovated and combined with additional outdoor exhibition areas, the five buildings provide a range of interior and exterior spaces to experience art in a variety of ambiences. Rooftops were cleared and interconnected to serve as extra open-air galleries and particular attention was given to natural lighting. The Sharjah Art Spaces were designed so as to allow the continued preservation of almost 40% of the urban fabric whilst creating a new gathering place for local and international art enthusiasts.