black balloons depict delicateness of middle eastern cities at dubai design week 2017

black balloons depict delicateness of middle eastern cities at dubai design week 2017

for dubai design week 2017, boano prišmontas + ricardas blazukas illustrates the recent history of the middle east through floating architectural forms. meaning the ‘one’s who returns’ in arabic culture, the temporary installation, ‘aidah’, pinpoints a time, 50 years ago to the present day, when the region boomed with an economy based on oil and where their cities rapidly rose from the deserts. this targets what the designers call ‘an inflated reality’ and aims to create a visual dialogue about the area’s long term future, specifically in terms of sustainability.

aidah, closed configuration – front perspective



located in the dubai design district (d3) during the 2017 design week, ‘aidah’ is a suggestion that investigates what truly defines a city. boano prišmontas + ricardas blazukas’ vision started after imagining an additional chapter to italo calvino’s ‘invisible cities’ book. by writing a story first, architecture then became the tool to express this narrative through three-dimensional forms.

have you ever walked through an imaginary city?



the temporary installation is configured of 50 black balloons that are tired to the ground with 500 meters of black rope and 50 foam bricks. the floating landscape belongs to and is in constant dialogue with the desert, as well as each other. as the environment changes, the balloons’ spatial relationships dramatically shift from hovering peacefully alone to crashing into their neighbors, or from gently resting upon one another to being totally isolated in the sky. the spheres are the foundation element of the city but at the same time, are its weakness. their flimsy structures evoke a sense of transient fragility and much like the bubble of wealth, they might burst or float away at any moment.




aidah redesigning the public space of dubai design week


it is an installation made of 50 balloons, 500m of rope and 50 bespoke foam bricks


the black ballons flying over the desert


the flimsy structures evoke a sense of transient fragility yet highlight its bold and distinctive character


the spheres unpredictably and constantly interact with each other


floating objects are the foundation element of cities but at the same time, its weakness


like the bubble of wealth, the city might burst or float away and it needs ballasts to anchor it firmly on the ground






designboom has received this project from our ‘DIY submissions‘ feature, where we welcome our readers to submit their own work for publication. see more project submissions from our readers here.


edited by: tim spears | designboom

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