About Us

The word “mawaheb” means “talents” in Arabic and is in reference to the various talents that we help realize in our student artists. We are an art studio where adults with special needs can learn and practice different forms of artistic expression.

Our History


The history of Mawaheb dates to 2010, when Wemmy de Maaker, a Dutch expatriate and art enthusiast, founded the studio with the help of a group of volunteers and supporters. Inspired by her experience of working with people of determination in the Netherlands, she wanted to create a similar opportunity for them in Dubai. Mawaheb started with a small group of students in a villa in Bastakiya, the historical district of Dubai, and gradually expanded the studio to accommodate more artists and activities.


In 2020, Mawaheb moved to a new and larger facility in Al Quoz, an industrial area that has become a hub for art and culture in Dubai. Next to the studio, Mawaheb also opened an art café, where visitors can enjoy coffee and food while admiring the artworks of the student artists. The café also serves as a meeting place for everyone to connect and get inspired by the inclusive vision of Mawaheb.

Our Mission

To encourage each person with special needs to reach their highest potential through art, enabling them towards independence.

Our Vision

To break down the boundaries and stigmas associated with people of determination, bridging the gap between them and society and celebrating their individuality.

Our Team

Wemmy de Maaker


Atta Jatoi

Relationship Manager

Jenny Hooff

Life Skills Instructor

Clizia Zepparelli

Art Teacher

Florentina Canete

Assistant Teacher