This November, the region’s most anticipated Design Week will take place.
Dubai Design Week continues to grow, cementing Dubai as the design capital of the Middle East
* The region’s largest creative festival returns this year from 12-17 November 2018
* The free-to-attend program will comprise more than 230 events throughout Dubai Design District (d3) and across the city
* With +120 institutions participating, the 2018 edition will see a 20% growth since last year’s event
Taking place at locations across the city, this year’s program will be the most comprehensive to date, with more than 120 companies participating and 230 events taking place, encompassing exhibitions, commissioned installations, awards and competitions, talks and workshops, tours and experiences for design enthusiasts and public visitors alike.
Dubai Design Week will this year launch its first app, allowing visitors to create personalised schedules on the go based on preferences and interests and to be the first to get notified of must-attend launches and events.
Coinciding with the event, this November will see the official opening of the Jameel Arts Centre, Dubai’s first contemporary arts museum, the inaugural Fikra Graphic Design Biennial in Sharjah, the first of its kind in the region, and a range of activities staged at Alserkal Avenue, reinforcing November as the annual focal point for design and creativity in Dubai.
Highlights of Dubai Design Week 2018 at d3
Exhibitions and Pop-ups
For the first time, this year Dubai Design Week partners with social networking giant Facebook through a real-world activation set in within the heart of Dubai Design District (d3). Customized workshops and knowledge sharing activities have been specially devised to celebrate the Arab creative community. Facebook’s 6-day physical presence will showcase how people can use the platform to connect and build communities in memorable, creative and responsible ways.
An exhibition highlighting eight of the brightest Emirati talents from across the country, UAE Design Stories: The Next Generation from The Emirates is a vehicle for generating awareness on the emerging creative profiles from the UAE.
Enabling UAE design since 2008, design-incubator Tashkeel will present ‘Design+Making UAE’; a destination for those curious about the local design ecosystem, exploring design practice in the UAE from concept to completion.
The roadshow exhibition ‘Original Comes from Vitra’ consists of series of booths, each dedicated to telling the story of a Vitra original. Each booth will narrate the history of the product with drawings, sketches and photographs of prototypes. Examples include some of world’s most iconic pieces of furniture; the Panton chair, the Standard chair by Jean Prouve and the Lounge Chair by Charles & Ray Eames.
DRAK, the design collective based in Dubai’s Ras Al Khor community will be conducting a community initiative titled ‘From RAK to DRAK’ where three designers, Amal Haliq, Faissal El-Malak and Khalid Mezaina, will focus on three commercial outlets from the neighbourhood.
ProtoPieces is an exhibition of furniture work designed by 12 students of the College of Architecture Art and Design (CAAD) at the American University of Sharjah.
A site-specific installation by Dubai-based firm ANARCHITECT, ‘Circadian Light Synthesis’ is set out over two pavilions at one of the d3 entrance points; one with natural light and the other with artificial light provided by Delta Light, exploring the human circadian rhythm and our relationship with natural light – both from the sun and the moon.
Abet Laminati have teamed up with renowned Italian designer Paola Navone, creating a giant jigsaw puzzle made from laminate pieces decorated with graphic baroque motifs in bold and clashing colour patterns, inspired by oriental printing. When placed together, the puzzle reveals itself to be an oversized gate; something enjoyable and interactive for all visitors of Dubai Design Week.
Competitions & Awards
The Middle East’s leading design innovation competition, this year the Audi Innovation Award has challenged designers in the region to respond to the theme ‘Connections’. With a panel of distinguished judges selecting the winning project amongst 450 registrations of interest, the winner will be announced on 13 November, during Dubai Design Week, and receive $25,000 worth of investment in their design.
The winning project of Urban Commissions 4.0, be unveiled during Dubai Design Week on 13 November, where it will be installed permanently in Dubai Design District (d3). Selected amongst the three projects shortlisted from over 100 submissions, responding to this year’s theme ‘Water Feature’; The annual competition is an initiative by Dubai Design Week, Dubai Culture & Arts Authority (DCAA) and Dubai Design District (d3). The open-call competition, Design 100, for designers from the UAE to create a piece of furniture or functional object for the chance of having 100 editions produced by Dubai Design District (d3) in partnership with American Hardwood Export Council will unveil its winner within Downtown Editions, where winning product will be sold to the fair’s visitors and all proceeds will be allocated to Dubai Cares and their support for Syrian refugees.
Talks & workshops
Dubai Design Week 2018 will host an extensive range of talks and panel discussions across a number of locations within d3. The Main Stage will see designers, creatives and opinion leaders addressing diverse subjects across sustainability, safeguarding culture, and what the future looks like. Highlights include international innovator Daan Roosegaarde, globally renowned Italian designer Paola Navone and Arab satirist Karl Sharro.
Workshops for professionals as well as public will take place across the Dubai Design Week program, with Re:Urban Studio providing the setting for professional masterclasses, amongst them creative design studio Ink; transforming music into physical spaces, alongside global agency MassiveMusic, who are demonstrating the exercise of branding sound.
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Downtown Design 13-16 November, 2018
Downtown Design returns 13-16 November, 2018 Larger in size, with a new section and creative feature concepts
* The region’s leading design trade fair, Downtown Design will take place from 13-16 November
* With more than 175 exhibitors, this year’s edition will be the largest to date, expanding in size by 20% following the fair’s rapid growth over the last few years
* New this year is Downtown Editions; a curated section within the fair, dedicated to bespoke and limited edition design from all over the world, with a spotlight on the region
* International experts will share their insight as keynote speakers at The Forum
* Design weeks from the region will bring some of the best talent to be showcased at Downtown Design
* Downtown Design is the commercial centrepiece of Dubai Design Week, the region’s largest creative festival