4 Awesome Study Chair Dubai –
Ghassan Salameh is a multi-disciplinary designer, educator, researcher, and artistic consultant. In 2018, he was artistic administrator of Beirut Architecture Week and aftermost year Salameh curated Madar, a Dubai Architecture Week exhibition committed to architecture addition and sustainability in the region. As artistic administrator of this year’s Dubai Architecture Week, Salameh aims to highlight the appulse of the contempo communicable on the MENASA region’s architecture arena and the way designers are responding to the crisis and rethinking the future. Here, he shares with Interior Design what fabricated Dubai Architecture Week (which ran from November 9-14) altered this year, some accident highlights, and how we can abutment designers in his built-in Lebanon deeply afflicted by the contempo blast.
Interior Design: In what ways did this year’s Dubai Architecture Week differ from antecedent editions?
Ghassan Salameh: This year we knew there wouldn’t be as abundant advocacy or as abundant of an all-embracing presence, so we absitively to try and abutment the abate businesses based actuality to advice them afflicted this crisis. We produced a lot of the activities ourselves through workshops, accessible calls, or commissions in adjustment to accord a adventitious to creatives to participate afterwards accepting to pay a lot of money. Addition affair that was new this year was the UAE Artisan exhibition, which appearance adolescent bearing or arising designers built-in or based in the UAE. The abstraction was to try and be as across-the-board and assorted as possible, to represent altered communities and types of makers, and accommodate a belvedere for acceptance and new designers to analysis their assignment afterwards actuality too judgmental on how able they are as products. We additionally had a lot of absolutely beautifully conceived architecture pieces by accustomed designers in this aforementioned exhibition, so it created a absolutely nice adverse in the space.
ID: There was additionally a lot added alfresco agreeable this year. What can you acquaint me about that?
GS: We absitively to booty advantage of the actuality that the acclimate is acceptable at this time of the year and do added alfresco exhibitions and installations to animate bodies to appointment afterwards accepting to accumulate in calm spaces. The alfresco installations all explored the accord amid bodies and accessible amplitude and how it has afflicted during the pandemic, how this has afflicted people’s accepted abundance and how it has impacted the city. The abstraction was additionally to move above adorning art or big bartering pieces in accessible spaces that accept no absolute action and move to a added bent and anatomic blazon of accession that can hopefully be repurposed afterwards Architecture Week. There were no big logo brands in the alfresco spaces, which fabricated the acquaintance feel added authentic.
ID: What were some of the participating projects that visitors got best aflame about?
GS: The Abwab pavilion is one of the projects I was absolutely aflame about. This year the board alleged Hozan Zangana, an Iraqi artisan who confused to the Netherlands aback he was 15 to abstraction and has accustomed his convenance there. It’s absorbing for me to see how addition who had to leave their home and go and achieve about abroad develops their convenance but still has a faculty of accord to this region. What are their memories? His allotment Fata Morgana reminds him of affective from burghal to burghal in the aback of a barter and how he acclimated to see these mirages in the desert. The accession featured a lot of actual addition and uses age-old adobe and rammed apple architecture techniques. It got a lot of absorption from bounded architects who are now aggravating to agenda business affairs with him and the teams who produced the installation.
ID: What’s addition addition that bodies were fatigued to and that you would like to highlight?
GS: The assignment of Christopher Benton, a Dubai artisan and artist. He presented a accumulating of chairs that were all made, accumulated and retrofitted by altered businesses—in old Dubai neighborhoods such as Al Satwa, Mina Zayed, and Khor Fakkan—out of anachronistic and begin abstracts and objects. It explores the angle of breezy architecture and architecture done by bodies rather than alone by designers. Bodies admired them because they brought up memories of the burghal and the markets and areas they know. These areas are allotment of their bounded ability and history.
ID: There was additionally an online talks program. What did you try to focus on with that?
GS: There were several altered alternation of talks organized by altered partners. I curated a alternation of bristles talks that focused on capacity such as abstract architecture approaches or according representation in architecture and affective abroad from the ascendant anecdotal of how architecture should be and aggravating to decolonize it. We additionally had a allocution about how crisis is an acclimation abettor with a focus on the adventures of a brace of Lebanese designers and cultural organizers who absolutely suffered in the accomplished few years, not to acknowledgment back the bang in August. These are still accessible on our YouTube.
ID: It has been a actual boxy time for designers about the apple and the bearings in the UAE and added MENASA arena has been no different. How do you achievement this accident accent the asperity of disturbing designers and offered applied help?
GS: It has absolutely been adamantine on creatives and the artistic industry in accepted with a lot of attempt due to banking issues. I achievement that this Architecture Week put these designers on a belvedere area bodies could see their assignment and that it will advance to accord opportunities for them. By allurement them to architecture to a borderline and a affair beneath difficult altitude I additionally saw the accident as a way of auspicious them to accumulate bearing assignment and experimenting and arduous themselves.
ID: You are from Lebanon and based there best of the time. How is the bearings for creatives in Beirut accustomed the actual ambiguous bread-and-butter bearings and the August anchorage blast?
GS: It’s absolutely addition akin of crisis that the country is facing. Designers accept not alone suffered from abridgement of funds for the accomplished few years but additionally physically and materially back the explosion. A lot of them accept absitively to stop accomplishing design, or to backpack to addition country; others accept absitively to change businesses. Some are still aggravating to be resilient. But a lot of them are annoyed and beat and are still aggravating to aces up the pieces. The accomplished two years accept been adverse for them.
ID: Did any Lebanon-based designers booty allotment in Dubai Architecture Week?
GS: We had affairs to actualize a affairs for Lebanese designers but afterwards speaking to organizers, galleries and designers there, and aggravating to adapt article together, it became credible that it was not doable. Bodies are aloof not ready, they are still adversity and aggravating to accept what happened to them, and they are not in the appropriate mindset. Physically it is absurd to do best things; aircraft is complicated, bearing is difficult, there is no money to advance in their work. Alike if we offered them the spaces and aircraft for free, it is adamantine for them to alike aftermath assignment at the moment. It was candidly actual black because I capital to use my position actuality in Dubai to try and advice but it was aloof impossible.
ID: What can bodies do to abutment the artistic association in Lebanon?
GS: What is bare is absolutely banking support; projects actuality commissioned from alfresco of Lebanon. If bodies can actualize acquaintance about Lebanese architecture and designers that would be actual helpful. There are some fundraising initiatives accident to clean some of the architecture studios but there are a lot of under-represented designers in Lebanon who don’t accord to a specific arrangement and accept few bodies to abutment them. I would say: Try to attending for grassroots organizations or try to abutment designers on an alone base or through claimed recommendations by allotment projects and announcement and announcement their work.
ID: In the analysis and assignment you did to put calm this year’s accident did you acquisition account and affidavit for optimism or hope?
GS: A lot of designers in the region, not alone the arising or adolescent ones, added accept the accent of adopting appropriate capacity and actuality affianced in analytic some of the issues we are facing. There is additionally a apparent drive to innovate in agreement of abstracts and amend the way we do production. I am not adage anybody is accomplishing cool acceptable articles and that there is no actual waste, but there is a address amid designers to appoint with added issues. Alike a brace of years ago architecture weeks all over the apple were added product-oriented but now we are starting to see added amusing albatross and added architecture for amusing innovation, and this makes me actual happy.
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