March 2017 was the sixth edition of Design Days Dubai, the leading fair in the Middle East and South Asia dedicated to collectible modern and contemporary design and was held at a new location within Dubai Design District (d3).
Positioned as a fair of discovery, the fair’s unique format provides an international platform for the region’s emerging design studios and furniture makers to debut their works, featuring them alongside an eclectic mix of the world’s leading design galleries. Running parallel to the exhibitor line-up was a strong non-commercial programme of education, workshops, installations and live performance allowing visitors to discover and engage with the design community and the works on display.
Running parallel to the exhibitor line-up was a diverse 4-day programme of talks, panel discussions, live performances, practical workshops and mentorship sessions open to all visitors at no extra charge. The programme included:
- Hands-on workshops and masterclasses by exhibitors such as Craft Council (UK)
- Design experts from the region, presented by Tashkeel
- Panel discussions organised with partners Dubai Culture and Arts Authority and Nuqat
- Daily Audi Innovation Talks
- Live performance by Dutch designer duo Os & Oos, supported by the Dutch Consulate
- A book signing by Marko Brajovic at The Atlas Bookstore, the region’s dedicated architectural archive
- Sound by Molecule, live digital radio combining exhibitor interviews and music
Audi Innovation Award
Renowned for innovation research and international awards that celebrate extraordinary progress and idea leadership, Audi announced the winner of its first ‘Audi Innovation Award’ for the Middle East at Design Days Dubai 2017. Under the inaugural year’s theme ‘Alternative’ the competition received applications from designers offering concepts that integrate existing solutions into new uses, ranging from lifestyle, healthcare, mobility, education and urban public spaces. The competition seeks to empower regional designers while archiving intellectual progress in the Middle East region.
The top 10 finalists are: Abdhul Hazeeb Madamapat, Daniel Kobel, Fatima Al Doukhi, Fortuné Penniman, Hussein Aljabi & Mohammed Shukkur, Musab Nahar and Sadeem. The top three finalists are: Sahar Madanat Design Studio with One Handed Tableware Set, Nick Karintzaidis Gaudi System and Mansour Attia with Metro-Bike Fly-Over.
Visit the Audi Lounge to see the top 10 designs and the models of the top three finalists; and discover the theme for the award’s second edition.
Location: Audi Lounge, Design Days Dubai
Urban Commissions 3.0 – Communal Table
Urban Commissions, a design competition set up by d3 and Dubai Culture & Arts Authority to engage with the UAE’s creative community and promote its diverse production industries, unveils the winning design under this year’s theme: the ‘communal table’, a celebration of the Emirati tradition of gathering for conversation, collaboration and respite.
In support of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum’s vision to transform Dubai into an innovation-driven economy, the Urban Commissions initiative since its launch in 2014 focuses on stimulating creativity in the UAE, inspiring the development of new technologies, creating smart and sustainable infrastructure, and driving entrepreneurship and small business growth within the arts and design sector. The 2017/2018 edition of Urban Commissions will open for submissions in late 2017.
Congratulations to the three finalists: Alya AlEghfeli and Jawaher AlKhayyal, Sarah Faruki, and Cecilia Morosi of SUPERFUTUREDESIGN*.
The Middle East Emergent Designer Prize by Van Cleef & Arpels
Van Cleef & Arpels, in collaboration with Tashkeel and Design Days Dubai, announced the finalists of The Middle East Emergent Designer Prize. Designers of its fifth edition were invited to submit designs for purposeful or functional products that embody the theme of Growth.
The theme touches upon of the importance of both physical and intellectual growth; participants were asked submit designs for products that reflect growth related to the aesthetics of their culture, expressing their attitudes towards education and aspirations to grow, whilst serving the practical needs of the contemporary society. Finalists will be selected based on based on creativity, innovation and aesthetics
The primary aim of the Middle East Emergent Designer Prize is to support and nurture emerging regional talent and create global awareness by highlighting the region’s best designs at the renowned Dubai Design Days forum.
Britain Takes Shape exhibition
In support of the 2017 UK/UAE Year of Creative Collaboration, the Dubai Culture & Arts Authority, the Emirate’s dedicated authority for Arts, Culture and Heritage, hosted an exhibition of British contemporary design within the 2017 edition of Design Days Dubai. Curated by Suzanne Trocmé, award-winning designer/author/curator, Britain Takes Shape featured the work of 10 pioneers of British design. All of the designs on display were produced in the UK as one-off pieces or in batch production and were shown for the first time in the UAE. Running alongside the exhibition were a series of talks and workshops hosted by the British-based designers, giving unparalleled access to UAE audiences.
Art of Crafts exhibition
This Van Cleef & Arpels’ exhibition at Design Days Dubai paid tribute to savoir-faire: the ability to bring depth, beauty and life to incredible designs. On display were the Émeraude en majesté collection and an exhibition of Porcelain de Sèvres, presenting an array of their most artistic and treasured designs, celebrating the traditional craft of porcelain métier d'art. During the exhibition, admirers of crafts experienced workshops: Gouache drawing, brings light and volume to the design from which the jewel is born; whilst the Porcelain de Sèvres workshop asserts traditional skills dating back more than 250 years.
Crafts Council, supported by the British Council, brought 11 UK-based contemporary designers to showcase their work at Design Days Dubai. The group of exhibitors were selected by a panel of experts and represented some of Britain’s brightest talent. The selected makers represent a range of disciplines and use a variety of experimental materials and techniques including leather, glass, ceramic, crochet and weaving. An extensive educational and outreach programme ran as part of this event.
Design Days Dubai event Information:
14 March 2017, d3
12:00 – 15:00 (ladies only)
14 - 16 March 2017
Public programme open 11:00 – 21:00
Design Days Dubai open 15:00 – 21:00
17 March 2017
Public programme open 13:00 – 19:00
Design Days Dubai open 13:00 – 19:00
Day tickets 25 AED if purchased online, 50 AED on the door
Tel. +971 4 563 1408
Talks were open to the public and workshops require pre-registration through the website.
Juli Bolaños Durman, Crafts Council
Tickets for Design Days Dubai can be purchased onsite during the fair.
14-17 March, 2017
Location: Dubai Design District (d3)
View the map here.