Dubai Design Week opens with eco-friendly designs
Dubai: Under the patronage of Sheikha Latifa bint Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, President of the Dubai Culture and Arts Authority and member of the Dubai Council, the eighth edition of Dubai Design Week opened on Wednesday in the Dubai Creative Hub, d3.
Organized in strategic partnership with d3 (Dubai Design District), member of TECOM Group PJSC, and supported by Dubai Culture, the event brings together more than 360 entities from the sector, further consolidating Dubai’s emergence as a major hub of the design and creativity. With a range of free events and activities, this year’s Dubai Design Week program focuses on design for a more sustainable future under the theme ‘Design With Impact’.
Sheikha Latifa said, “Dubai Design Week provides a dynamic platform for the region’s design industry to advance innovation and explore new growth opportunities. Over the years, the event has spurred Dubai’s development into a global hub of creativity and industry talent. This year’s edition, which brings together the best talents, architectural firms and designers from the international design industry, explores design innovations that can have a positive impact on the future of the planet. By showcasing designs for a sustainable future, the event will foster meaningful conversations about how design can accelerate environmental protection efforts. Dubai Design Week will also help increase the capacity of the creative industries to be at the forefront of global efforts to advance sustainability and human wellbeing.
Khadija Al Bastaki, Vice President of Dubai Design District, member of TECOM Group PJSC, said, “We are delighted to launch the eighth edition of Dubai Design Week here at Dubai Design District. The TECOM Group, of which we are a part here at d3, is deeply committed to supporting the growth and evolution of the creative industries in Dubai. Platforms such as Dubai Design Week have an important role to play in catalyzing the growth of the creative community. As part of our strategic partnership with Dubai Design Week, we are always on the lookout for exceptional talents who are rethinking the usual. We encourage the public to explore the installations, exhibitions, activations, workshops, lectures, craft market and unique creative vibe of the event, as well as to better understand how Dubai is strengthening its status as a Creative City of design by UNESCO.
Kate Barry, Director of Dubai Design Week, said: “The Week’s dynamic program is a testament to Dubai’s position as a hub of design and creativity striving to realize its ambitious vision for a future more sustainable. This year we open with a series of installations and exhibitions by international and regional designers and architects who present designs that aim to have a positive impact on the environment. Every work is driven by innovation in new materials and recycling and upcycling processes that promote sustainability.
Microcosm of global industry
The flagship event of Dubai Design Week is the main design fair, Downtown Design, which is back on the d3 waterfront. Featuring over 200 international and regional brands as well as designers, immersive installations and collection premieres, event highlights include an interactive new media installation by Canadian Studio Iregular, sponsored by Kohler; a series of live lectures and engaging panel discussions at the Forum at Downtown Design, supported by Aritco; and a series of exhibitions embodying the Design With Impact theme of Dubai Design Week, including the debuts of Stella McCartney, OBMI and Grounded Design.
Visitors can explore more than 20 large-scale installations developed by emerging and world-renowned regional talent. Highlights include “Let’s Talk About the Weather” by Bokja; and Deepak Jangra’s ‘GRIDS’, an installation in the form of a boxing ring that hosts talks on issues such as climate change and upcycling.
As part of these more than 20 installations, the Dubai Design District will hold its annual d3 architecture exhibition alongside Dubai Design Week. Bringing together some of the brightest minds in the regional and international architectural space, the third edition of the exhibition will present a collection of architectural works that explore how design can promote a sustainable future.
Immersive large-scale installations will demonstrate innovation in materials and sustainable designs, such as a pavilion made from waste shells by Fadaa Space, and spark conversations about how design can positively impact the environment. The innovative exhibits, which are made of sustainable materials like date scraps, old fishing nets and demolished materials that have been recycled or reused, will be held for the first time in various locations across d3.
This year, Dubai Design Week’s program welcomes three new exhibitions, including: Matter-ials featuring a series of interior installations that highlight key environmental issues and symbolize the opportunity created by materials that matter; Designing Women, a multi-disciplinary showcase where visitors journey through an exhibition of assertive aesthetics and designs in interior installations and design pieces; and Design in the Metaverse powered by Dubai-based Metaverse development specialist MetaDecrypt, which offers visitors an immersive exploration of how metaverse technologies push the boundaries of design. The annual UAE Designers Exhibition, curated this year by Cyril Zammit, has a space specially designed by the dynamic Emirati architectural duo at Studio D.04.
Conferences and workshops
For design professionals and those curious about culture, there will be more than 100 conferences and workshops with a series of keynotes and round tables. The Downton Design Forum will focus on the business of design and feature high-level international speakers, including award-winning interior designer Kelly Hoppen CBE, Florentine designer Duccio Maria Gambi and renowned regional experts such as architect Kuwaiti Jassim Al Saddah. Panelists such as Ali Bahmani and Mario Gagliardi will explore the intersection between craftsmanship and technology under the theme Source, Resource, Outsource.
The Maker Space will be packed with dynamic workshops for design enthusiasts of all skill levels and ages. The program includes workshops such as Mycelium Experiment, where participants can make mushrooms and mycelium, while learning about their value to the planet. Maska celebrates the gift of giving with a workshop that recycles fabrics to wrap gifts for orphans.
For the first time, the Design Market by FLTRD will run throughout the week, offering a retail experience full of local offerings ranging from homewares to ready-to-wear and will extend into the weekend to offer the best of local handicrafts, in addition to family activities. Participants include KKONCEPT, the versatile clothing brand creating playful embroidery and high-quality jumpsuits, and Co Chocolat, whose products use fermented cocoa beans and superfood ingredients.
in5, TECOM Group PJSC’s enabling platform for start-ups and entrepreneurs, will launch Atypique, a permanent pop-up store that showcases a variety of products developed by start-ups based in its design-focused Innovation Center . The store will provide space for in5 start-ups to showcase their creativity and talent, organize events, concerts, recurring exhibitions and community projects, making it a hub for cross-cultural interaction and business networking. business. Strategically located in the d3, in5 Design is home to design start-ups focused on fashion and innovative product design.
The Dubai Institute of Design and Innovation (DIDI) will also showcase its talent and vision at Dubai Design Week this week, showcasing its most comprehensive lineup to date. Located in the heart of d3, the region’s first university dedicated exclusively to design and innovation will feature a student exhibition (in Building 4) and a series of thought-provoking panel discussions led by university faculty.
The event will feature a number of emerging and established Emirati design personalities such as Khalid Shafar from Khalid Shafar Design Studio, Salem Al Qassimi from Fikra Design Studio and Murshed Mohammad from Drivu. The university will also host a series of workshops and courses, all open to the public. Topics and themes featured include sustainability, humanized technology, design for outer space, digital reality, transformative robotics, design for circularity, 3D visualization tools, AI and much more .
Dubai Design Week is a free event and visitors can download the free Dubai Design Week app to find out who is attending, explore the full program and register for Downtown Design.