Dubai Design Week 2017 by Art Dubai Group & Dubai Culture and Arts Authority

January 17, 2018

Dubai Design Week 2017: The third edition of Dubai Design Week 2017 staged over 200 events celebrating design in a wide range of disciplines and brought a record-number of 60,000 visitors to the Dubai Design District (d3), an impressive 50% increase from last year, further establishing Dubai’s position as a regional hub for design and creativity. Throughout Dubai, designers showcased ground-breaking design, hosted talks and workshops and welcomed visitors into the creative process. Providing an exceptional educational opportunity, 3,200 students from schools and universities across the UAE took part in the educational tours at Dubai Design Week 2017.

Benedict Floyd, CEO and Co-Founder of Art Dubai Group that owns and manages Dubai Design Week, says: “In only three editions, Dubai Design Week has grown to equal in stature its sister event Art Week and plays a similar role in establishing Dubai as the region’s capital for culture and creativity. Through our events such as Art Dubai, the world’s most globally diverse art fair and Global Grad Show, the world’s largest gathering of universities, we are able to leverage Dubai’s position to create unique events that have become meeting points for the world’s creative community”.

Dubai Design Week’s Head of Design, William Knight, says, “The programme we’re proud to launch today is testament to the talent and commitment that exists within Dubai and interest that has been generated globally through previous editions of Dubai Design Week. The team has been thrilled to work with an incredible range of designers, companies and sponsors to stage an event that is bursting with possibilities for visitors from near and far.”

d3’s Chief Executive Officer, Mohammad Saeed Al Shehhi, says: “We’re very pleased with the incredible response to Dubai Design Week, hosted by d3 again this year, which witnessed a significant increase in visitors from last year. The collaborations between organisations and independent designers, including more than 50 d3 creative partners and retailers, present an extraordinary calibre of creativity and innovation in various sectors of design. This has not only boosted Dubai’s role as an arbiter of cutting-edge design, but also helped emerging regional designers, thinkers and design students bring forth their ideas to a much larger audience.”

Dubai Design Week 2017 is supported by Meraas, who are responsible for a unique portfolio of urban destinations, such as City Walk, The Beach, Boxpark, Last Exit, The Outlet Village, Kite Beach, Bluewater’s, La Mer and Al Seef, that are designed to make Dubai and the UAE better for people to live, work and visit; and Audi, the long-time supporter of Dubai Design Week, which will this year launch the second Audi Innovation Award – a competition for design research and the highlighting of innovative ideas.

DOWNTOWN DESIGN: Celebrating its fifth edition, the Middle East’s leading design fair, staged its largest edition to date, attracting 15,000 visitors, an increase of 25% from last year. Taking place at the d3 Waterfront, Downtown Design is the regional meeting point for the design industry and a platform to explore the latest trends in contemporary design. With 150 exhibitors, 72 of which are new to the event and the region, the fair has grown 350 % since its inauguration.

Downtown Design is the commercial heart of Dubai Design Week and the region’s leading design trade show held at the new d3 waterfront event space. In 2016, the show attracted 12,500 visitors; over 80% of whom were trade professionals. Doubling in size this year with over 150 exhibitors from across 25 countries, the 2017 edition of Downtown Design features 70 new high-end international and regional brands and debuts eight emerging design brands from the UAE region.

Downtown Design is the only platform in the Middle East for the region’s trade professionals to discover original, high quality design from all over the world. In its fifth edition, the Fair returns to the Dubai Design District (d3) from 14-17 November 2017 as part of Dubai Design Week. It presents a carefully edited roster of established and emerging brands across a variety of product categories including furniture, lighting, bathrooms, kitchens, textiles and accessories. Fostering greater interaction, connectivity and commercial opportunity, Downtown Design is dedicated to providing a dynamic environment for buyers and brands to do business easily and efficiently.

Downtown Design; the anchor event for Dubai Design Week announces its largest and most significant edition to date, celebrating 5 successful years as the leading design trade fair for high quality design in the Middle East. Taking place from 14-17 November in partnership with the Dubai Design District (d3)+ Dubai Culture & Arts Authority (DCAA), the show is set to enhance its position as the Middle East’s essential contemporary design event; providing industry and public audiences with new product, trends and inspiration.

Rue Kothari, Show Director of Downtown Design says “We’re delighted to be marking five years of Downtown Design with a show double the size of previous editions. Not only does this reflect the strength of the exhibition and its reputation but also the growth in high-demand sectors of lighting, furniture and textiles. The show continues its rise, while focusing on connecting exhibitors to the region’s leading architects and interior designers. Helping brands and buyers to unlock the potential of the Middle East design market is at the heart of Downtown Design.”

Downtown Design maintains its renowned approach to detail, quality and relevance in selecting brands to exhibit. The 2017 edition sees an increase in the number brands across all categories, with an outstanding 90% retention of key brands; each of which is returning with fresh concepts for the market.

This includes sought-after furniture brands Kettal, Minotti, Moroso and Sancal, who between them collaborate with world renowned designers Patricia Urquiola, Sebastian Herkner, Jasper Morrison and the Bouroullec Brothers. Newcomers to the exhibitor line-up include iconic furniture, textile and lighting brands including B&B Italia, Designer’s Guild, MDF Italia, Meridiani, Marset, Sans Souci, Santa Cole and Vondom.

Each year Downtown Design delivers a carefully considered visitor experience, from the design of the communal areas to the Forum space, which will host a full programme of industry talks. Restaurant and concept store The Light House provide an outstanding F&B offer at the heart of the show, alongside an outdoor, water-side terrace.

To deliver this vision, this year Downtown Design has partnered with some of region’s most innovative talents: Local Interior Architecture firm LSD to reimagine a new masterplan for the event; leading interior design firm AAC to create the bespoke café and landscape architects Desert Ink to design a unique installation for the entrance to the fair.

Downtown Design’s commitment to its exhibitors includes bespoke marketing and public relations tailored to support each brand, and a dedicated Buyers Programme which matches commercial objectives with buyer profiles. The result is a trade audience which is unparalleled both in terms of its quality and relevance.

The series of live events at Downtown Design will feature an opening keynote from London-based avant-garde design duo Fredrikson Stallard and include key speakers such as Abbie Chung, Senior Associate at international architecture studio 5+ Design, along with several design and panel discussions featuring George Fleck, Vice-President and Global Brand Management & Marketing-Le Méridien, Renaissance & Westin, Tom Arnel, Managing Director at hospitality specialist Bull & Roo and Delhi based architects Manit and Sonali Rastogi of Morphogenesis.

GLOBAL GRAD SHOW: With over 200 projects from 92 of the best universities, Global Grad Show is the world’s largest gathering of universities that presented innovative design solutions to improve our lives. This year, the show inaugurated the Progress Prize; selected by a global jury chaired by Her Highness Sheikha Latifa bint Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-Chairman of the Dubai Culture & Arts Authority, and the winning design was awarded to graduates of the School of Form in Poland.

Hosted by the Dubai Design District (d3), Global Grad Show announces the project selections for the third edition of the acclaimed annual exhibition of life-changing inventions from graduates of the world’s leading design and technology universities. Curated by renowned author and designer, Brendan McGetrick, 200 innovative projects have been selected from over 470 global entries. The selections will be presented at the Global Grad Show, which takes place as a part of Dubai Design Week, November 13-18, 2017.

Brendan McGetrick curated the projects based on his personal interpretation of design that emphasises four categories: innovation that transcends technology and exists independent of wealth; equality without hierarchy amongst universities, regions and designers; universal design open to all types of projects; and impact on the world at large through solutions to some of the world’s most pressing problems.

“We organize Global Grad Show to be a celebration of beautiful ideas,” Brendan McGetrick explains. “It is free to attend and features projects that are designed to directly benefit social and environmental causes. By presenting a cross section of design programs from around the world, we try to demonstrate how the brightest young minds are designing the future. The variety of programs offers a unique view to the ways in which designers in different places, with different budgets, cultural contexts, and tools develop solutions to the problems and opportunities of our time.”

A not for profit initiative, the Global Grad Show will welcome graduates from 90 universities to Dubai to present forward-thinking prototypes around the themes of empowerment, connection, and sustainability to an expected audience of over 30,000 attendees. Graduates hail from universities far and wide, including leading institutions such as Design Academy Eindhoven (Netherlands), Massachusetts Institute of Technology, (USA), Royal College of Art (UK), and National University of Singapore. Further, work from emerging markets rarely seen on a global scale will be on view, including projects from designers based in Iran, Serbia, Uganda, Peru, Malaysia and New Zealand.

Global Grad Show is held at Dubai Design District (d3), which plays a key element in Dubai’s vision to transform into an innovation-led economy; the district it aims to engage, inspire and enable emerging talent, as well as provide a platform to showcase Arab creativity to a larger global audience.

Global Grad Show, the “Oscars” of graduate design and technology, is the world’s largest and most diverse meeting of design and innovation graduates. 200 projects showcasing the best in progressive thinking on the future of design, science and innovation will be exhibited from 90 of the world’s elite universities. Those involved include world-renowned names such as The Royal College of Art, London; Stanford University, California and RMIT Melbourne, alongside schools from emerging design centres such as Pearl Academy, New Delhi and Makerere University, Kampala.

EXHIBITIONS AND INSTALLATIONS: 14 exhibitions and installations were commissioned with a focus on local and regional talent. Designers took part in producing new content that included work by Emirati designers Aljoud Lootah, Lujaine Rezk and Khalid Shafar and the stand-out exhibition of the year Abwab displayed a selection of the best work from 47 designers from the region.

Abwab, Dubai Design Week’s exhibition of regional design talent selected by a high-profile international editorial board including Joy Mardini, Max Fraser and Sheikha Lateefa bin Rashid, had been situated at the heart of d3. Living up to its name – Abwab translates as doors – this year’s exhibition  hosted 45 designs from 15 countries selected through a process requiring creatives to nominate another designer upon submission; coined as a ‘design dominos’.

Held under the Patronage of Her Highness Sheikha Latifa bint Mohammed bin RashidAl Maktoum, in partnership with Dubai Design District (d3), Dubai Design Week’s popular exhibition Abwab have returned to this year’s programme. The pavilion houses a showcase of emerging design talent from the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia (MENASA). Abwab-which translates into ‘doors’ in Arabic- invites audiences into the diverse design scenes of regional creative industries.

Rawan Kashkoush, Creative Director of Abwab and Dubai Design Week’s Head of Programming says: “Abwab is an architectural undertaking to house design works from a burgeoning creative community spanning across three regions that share Dubai as an anchor, the exhibition looks to momentarily bridge these faraway places through design.”

Situated within the outdoor corridors of d3, the Abwab pavilion has been designed by Dubai-based architectural studio Fahed + Architects.The innovative structure has been constructed using borrowed and repurposed bed springs sourced from waste management company Bee’ah. Set against the large mass of buildings, the structure will appear as a coral cluster in a reef. Inspired by the lightness of nature, the bedsprings act as a coil mesh, distilling daylight to reveal patterns on the exhibited works and theground around the structure.

Fahed Majeed, Founder & Chief Architect of Fahed + Architects says: “The Abwab pavilion, anembodiment of hope, highlights the most relevant value – reuse and recycle, while setting new benchmarks in unconventional design. The structure is designed as a contemporary and invitingbspace that enables it to be perceived as an artistic expression.”

The shortlisted works were found to reflect strong cultural roots or local production techniques. A strong trend in material investigation and reinterpretation of production techniques was visible in many of the submissions, showing an exciting growth in design production.

Among the pieces on display it was found that the top three objects produced in MENASA are chairs, lights and vessels/bowls. Designs from the UAE, Lebanon and Morroco were the most popular, followed by works from Egypt, India and Kuwait.

Visitors of the exhibition will experience a curatorial journey through the pieces by way of eight groups that link from one to the next; interpretation, intersection, geometry, mimicry, tactility, artisanal, nostalgia and re-use linking back to interpretation and so on. For the first time, the objects on show will be available for purchase throughout the week.

GraphicsRCA: 50 Years and Beyond. Exploring the beginnings and possible future direction of graphic design from the world’s leading post-graduate design school, the show is an insight into some of the best graphic design concepts created over the last half-century. The exhibition features original, rarely seen works from the RCA archive, including designs made at the College by RCA alumni who have gone on to become industry leaders and innovators.

Iconic City. An annual spotlight on a regional city, this year’s exhibition ‘Loading… Casa’ has been curated by Salma Lahlou, who has commissioned new works from a sound artist, graphic designer, photographer and interior architect to portray the city she lives and breathes: Casablanca. The exhibition will provide an insight into the design culture and atmosphere of one the region’s key hubs for creative industries and manufacturing.

Once Upon DESIGN: A curated collection of contemporary product and furniture design, a new Routes for Arabian Heritage; from the UAE and the region, commissioned by Design Space 1971 (Sharjah) and curated by Noor Aldabbagh, Once Upon DESIGN marks an important moment as the heritage of materials and process embraces contemporary design in the Middle East.

Temporary installations:  These were dotted across d3 including a structure that plays with light devised by Lujaine Rezk and Albert Kolambel; To celebrate the opening of their new Creative Centre at d3, London-based design studio Fredrikson Stallard present ‘Prologue’, a dramatic, crystal adorned piece for Swarovski; Making her debut at Dubai Design Week Paula Zucotti will bring an intriguing showcase based on her popular book ‘Everything We Touch’; Lasvit will reveal ‘Silent Call’ designed by Khalid Shafar, which celebrates the daily ritual of the call to prayer, Apical Reform’s interactive and playful piece will create a ‘My Dubai’ moment for all visitors.

EVENTS, POP-UPS, TALKS & WORKSHOPS: The live events programme, opening with a keynote by one of the world’s most influential architects Sir David Adjaye in conversation with Emirati commentator Sultan Sooud Al-Qassemi – features a host of gatherings, from academic conferences to keynotes from global design influencers such as PepsiCo Chief Design Officer, Mauro Porcini and the co-inventor of the Swatch Watch, Elmar Mock. In addition, Audi will host the Innovation Lounge, with a string of talks on innovation. Daily workshops, staged in association with newly launched d3 co-working space Re:Urban Studio, will host a diverse range of activities for design practitioners and the design curious alike.

World leading architect Sir David Adjaye opened the week to a packed house, and was followed by 92 talks and workshops held by international and regional experts and leading institutions such as the Royal College of Art. The successful debut of Meraas’s ‘Making Space’, welcomed over 3.000 visitors with activities run by a number of partners including Tashkeel and Al Jalila Cultural Centre for Children.

Features of Dubai Design Week’s pop-up programme of activities for all ages include the Super Design Market, featuring a carefully selected range of design brands for visitors to purchase high quality design products, and award-winning watchmaker, RADO who will invite visitors to discover the latest collections with their “Portraits of Design” exhibition.

The line-up were also emphasize design-led activities for weekend visitors at d3, welcoming all ages to the popular Ripe Market brining weekend atmosphere to d3 with carefully selected hand-made products, and IKEA’s engaging exhibition ‘Let’s Play for Change’ that aims to bring out the child in every visitor and inspire people to integrate play into their everyday routine. Alongside this there will be opportunities for everyone to get involved at the Makers Space hosted by Al Jalila Cultural Centre for Children, Maska, Urban Sketchers and The JamJar, among others.

Around the City: The widest possible array of partners and contributors to Dubai Design Week are involved in this year’s programme, with design and creativity represented in venues across the city. Highlights for 2017 will include activities being staged at the Etihad Museum for the first time as part of Dubai Design Week, a return from DRAK – Design Ras Al Khor with a focus on Luxury. Alserkal Avenue and Al Quoz will also host extensive programmes.

About Dubai Design Week: Dubai Design Week is one of the world’s newest and most ambitious international design events, conceived to shine a spotlight on Dubai as a leading design hub, and share the UAE’s thriving design scene with the world at large. Established in 2015, it is owned and managed by the Art Dubai Group and is held under the dedicated patronage of Her Highness Sheikha Latifa bint Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice Chairman, Dubai Culture and Arts Authority.

The third edition of Dubai Design Week takes place 13-18 November 2017, in locations across the city. Staged in association with Dubai Design District (d3), which acts as the hub venue, the six-day event will attract designers, architects, educators, thought-leaders, influencers and significant public audiences, through a varied and comprehensive programme of contemporary design.

By engaging and showcasing design talent in Dubai, from across the region and around the world, Dubai Design Week’s activity is carefully balanced to support and stimulate Dubai’s design economy and to engage the Design Week’s diverse audience. With a substantial marketing & communications campaign aimed at audiences locally and beyond, Dubai Design Week’s goal is to engage through inspiration, visitor experiences and networking to celebrate the positive impact and potential of design in Dubai and beyond.

About Dubai Design District: Dubai Design District, (d3), a member of TECOM Group, is a destination dedicated to design. Created to provide a home to the region’s growing number of designers, creatives and artists, d3 has fast become the hub for inspiration and innovation. Located in the heart of Dubai, just minutes away from Dubai Mall the thriving community provides a platform where individuals can unite, collaborate and create.

The Design Quarter at d3 is fully operational with over 400 creative partners and retailers. Visitors can discover an authentic shopping and dining experience with unique lifestyle boutiques, fashion ateliers, art galleries, design workshops and home-grown restaurants. d3 has also become a popular events space, attracting international crowds and artists to cultural exhibitions such as Dubai Design Week, Fashion Forward, Sole DXB and Meet d3.

The Creative Community is the second phase of Dubai’s Design District due to open in 2019. The new space has three sections, a large events plaza, design-led work spaces with an industrial look and urban feel and the region’s first design university The Dubai Institute of Design and Innovation (DIDI). Visitors can enjoy a unique experience including design studios, art galleries and public spaces showcasing arts and crafts with unique and innovative retail and dining options.

About Dubai Design Week: Dubai Design Week is one of the world’s newest and most ambitious international design events, conceived to shine a spotlight on Dubai as a leading design hub, and share the UAE’s thriving design scene with the world at large. Established in 2015, it is owned and managed by the Art Dubai Group and is held under the dedicated patronage of Her Highness Sheikha Latifa bint Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice Chairman, Dubai Culture and Arts Authority.

The third edition of Dubai Design Week takes place 13-18 November 2017, in locations across the city. Staged in association with Dubai Design District (d3), which acts as the hub venue, the six-day event will attract designers, architects, educators, thought-leaders, influencers and significant public audiences, through a varied and comprehensive programme of contemporary design.

By engaging and showcasing design talent in Dubai, from across the region and around the world, Dubai Design Week’s activity is carefully balanced to support and stimulate Dubai’s design economy and to engage the Design Week’s diverse audience. With a substantial marketing & communications campaign aimed at audiences locally and beyond, Dubai Design Week’s goal is to engage through inspiration, visitor experiences and networking to celebrate the positive impact and potential of design in Dubai and beyond.

About Dubai Design District: Dubai Design District, (d3), a member of TECOM Group, is a destination dedicated to design. Created to provide a home to the region’s growing number of designers, creatives and artists, d3 has fast become the hub for inspiration and innovation. Located in the heart of Dubai, just minutes away from Dubai Mall the thriving community provides a platform where individuals can unite, collaborate and create.

The Design Quarter at d3 is fully operational with over 400 creative partners and retailers. Visitors can discover an authentic shopping and dining experience with unique lifestyle boutiques, fashion ateliers, art galleries, design workshops and home-grown restaurants. d3 has also become a popular events space, attracting international crowds and artists to cultural exhibitions such as Dubai Design Week, Fashion Forward, Sole DXB and Meet d3.

The Creative Community is the second phase of Dubai’s Design District due to open in 2019. The new space has three sections, a large events plaza, design-led work spaces with an industrial look and urban feel and the region’s first design university The Dubai Institute of Design and Innovation (DIDI). Visitors can enjoy a unique experience including design studios, art galleries and public spaces showcasing arts and crafts with unique and innovative retail and dining options.

About Dubai Culture & Arts Authority: The Dubai Culture & Arts Authority (Dubai Culture) was launched on March 8, 2008 by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, in order to drive the growth of the city’s artistic and cultural landscape. The Authority has grown to play a major role in the realization of the Dubai Plan 2021, to highlight Dubai as a thriving capital for creative industries and further embed the Emirate’s credentials as a city of happy, creative and empowered people.

Dubai Culture also plays a leading role in support of the UAE National Strategy for Reading 2026, in particular by undertaking a major refurbishment of all Dubai Public Libraries branches to transform them into state-of-art cultural and artistic hubs. Across all of its branches, Dubai Public Library also provides children and young adults with a range of educational and entertaining activities that encourage the use of its facilities.

The Authority also manages more than 17 heritage sites across the Emirate, and is a key government stakeholder in the development of the Dubai Historical District. As the custodian Authority of Dubai’s museum sector, Dubai Culture officially launched Etihad Museum in December 2016. The museum provides platform to encourage cultural exchange and to connect Emirati youth with their culture and history.

About Meraas: It is dedicated to making Dubai and the UAE better for people to live, work and play in. We design for a diverse mix of people to stimulate a creative urban culture where the next generation of ideas, businesses and communities can take root. Our investments ensure a better future for generations to come and stretch across different sectors including food, retail, leisure, hospitality, health and education.

Our destinations which include to date – City Walk, The Beach, Boxpark, Last Exit, The Outlet Village, Kite Beach, Bluewaters, La Mer and Al Seef – are open places for communities to socialise, explore, learn, play, create and innovate; and our support for Dubai Design Week stems from our desire to see Dubai fulfil its ambition of becoming the world capital of fashion and design.

About Audi: The Audi Group, with its brands Audi, Ducati and Lamborghini, is one of the most successful manufacturers of automobiles and motorcycles in the premium segment. It is present in more than 100 markets worldwide and produces at 16 locations in 12 countries. 100 percent subsidiaries of AUDI AG include Audi Sport GmbH (Neckarsulm), Automobili Lamborghini S.p.A. (Sant’Agata Bolognese, Italy) and Ducati Motor Holding S.p.A. (Bologna, Italy).

In 2016, the Audi Group delivered to customers about 1.868 million automobiles of the Audi brand, 3,457 sports cars of the Lamborghini brand and 55,451 motorcycles of the Ducati brand. In the 2016 fiscal year, AUDI AG achieved total revenue of €59.3 billion and an operating profit of €3.1 billion. At present, approximately 88,000 people work for the company all over the world, more than 60,000 of them in Germany. Audi focuses on sustainable products and technologies for the future of mobility.

Mohammad Saeed Al Shehhi, Chief Operating Officer, d3 comments “This year’s Dubai Design Week programme truly reflects the talent that is located across the region and within d3, with 50 Business Partners staging events. Visitors can enjoy an incredible programme throughout the event with workshops, installations and The Global Grad Show which showcases the works of young designers. Each year, this event is growing in size and reach and it will continue to be an anchor platform for the design community.”

William Knight, Head of Design at the Art Dubai Group said: ‘It has been an outstanding Dubai Design Week, which has made a positive impact on everyone that visited events and the city. The event demonstrated the creativity and commitment of Dubai’s creative community and its supporters. In particular we’d like thank Dubai Design Week sponsors and partners including d3, Meraas, Audi Middle East, PepsiCo, Rado, Swarovski, IKEA, the Royal College of Art, Uber and Hills Advertising’.

In Dubai’s collaborative spirit, and as a reflection of the city’s global outlook, Dubai Design Week is both regional and international in scope and ambition, encompassing public and private sectors, culture, education and entertainment, and spans multiple disciplines, ranging from graphic and product design to architecture and industrial design.

Dubai Design Week 2017

Founders :  Art Dubai Group

supporters & strategic partner:   Dubai Culture and Arts Authority

Design Destination at:  Dubai Design District (d3)

Headline sponsors:   Audi and Meraas

Established in:  2015

www.dubaidesignweek.ae.

www.dubaidesigndistrict.com

www.downtowndesign.com

www.globalgradsho

www.dubaiculture.gov.ae

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