Design Week kicks off tomorrow. Here’s what we’re looking forward to exploring…
DOWNTOWN DESIGN: For the design shopaholic
This year sees Downtown Design with 100 brands participating from 28 countries presenting top-quality, original products from furniture and fabrics to lighting, bathrooms and kitchens. The show features a dedicated Italian Luxury Interiors pavilion presented by the Italian Trade Agency and has also partnered with six international Design Weeks (Addis Ababa, Barcelona, Beirut, Reykjavik, and Taipei) bringing together an eclectic mix of indigenous materials, skills, industrial techniques and craftsmanship to highlight each country’s individual cultural context.
GLOBAL GRAD SHOW: The next generation of design
This exhibition of innovation, inventions and technology from students across the world, returns to Dubai Design Week as the largest international gathering of design graduates ever with 145 projects showcasing projects from 50 leading universities in 30 countries. Curated by Brendan McGetrick, Global Grad Show highlights designs that Empower, Sustain and Connect. From a jacket that transforms into a tent capable of providing shelter for four adults, inhabitable roofscapes that provide privacy to refugees in camps, products that help reduce wasting water, collapsible hydroponic farms, to a kitchen for one-armed users, the projects were designed to demonstrate new ways of thinking and create lasting impact on the world.
ABWAB: What your neighbours are doing
An exhibition dedicated to exploring the design narrative of countries within the MENASA (Middle East, North Africa and South Asia) region. Abwab, meaning doors in Arabic, literally presents a gateway for six countries – Algeria, Bahrain, India, Iraq, Palestine and UAE – to showcase a range of special commissions revolving around the theme ‘The Human Senses’.
ICONIC CITY, CAIRO NOW! CITY INCOMPLETE: What happens when they stop building
Dubai Design Week has selected Cairo as the focus of this year’s Iconic City exhibition, a series of annual exhibitions launched in 2015 that explores the culture and design scene of individual cities within the Middle East. Cairo Now! A City Incomplete captures for the first time under one roof the Egyptian capital’s current design landscape and celebrates innovation and emerging talent in the fields of product, furniture, graphic and typeface design as well as architecture. Curated by Cairo-based architect, independent researcher and writer Mohamed Elshahed, over 65 Egyptian architects, designers, entrepreneurs and graphic artists will contribute to a presentation, inspired by the city’s infamous red brick housing stock that appears in varying stages of completion across the capital.
SATELLITE DESIGN EVENTS ACROSS THE CITY
Local retailers, design brands, galleries, universities and institutions will independently stage events throughout Dubai. We’re particularly looking forward to Design Ras al Khor (DRAK16). The week-long exhibition explores the design topic of ‘Celebrating Wood’ in a new venue, Lever Building Materials, in partnership with Italian manufacturers of porcelain stoneware Mirage, within the Ras Al Khor industrial area. DRAK16 will present four main design projects by up-and-coming international and locally-based designers such as Tulip Hazbar, Hind Bin Demaithan (commissioned by 1971 Design Space), Hala Kaiksow and Lina Younes. There will also be a series of pop-up dinners held in the space each evening, hosted by Ghaf Kitchen.