desert cast, by three kuwait based designers, aims to contribute towards the development of the gulf region’s design identity. the trio, jassim alnashmi, kawther alsaffar and ricardas blazukas, were invited by dubai design week to participate in the week-long festival in november. their project seeks to create a bridge between past and present, local and borrowed.

desert cast explores kuwaiti identity in contemporary forms at dubai design week 2018
images courtesy of ricardas blazukas

 

 

the team, blazukas, alnashmi and alsaffar, were invited to represent kuwait city in abwab, the centrepiece exhibition of the festival, and respond to the theme of storytelling. the exhibition hosts pavilions for 4 cities; amman, beirut, dubai, and eastern saudi arabia. the designers decided to examine the history of kuwaiti identity and tell a story by using the past to create contemporary objects. 46 custom designed products, that were sand-cast in a foundry, are being presented in the kuwait city pavilion accompanied by 5 screens showing the 5 stages of the fabrication process.

desert cast explores kuwaiti identity in contemporary forms at dubai design week 2018

desert cast / kuwait city pavilion at abwab, dubai design week 2018 – visualisation by lifang international

 

 

the series starts from a critique of the kitsch replication of classical architectural motifs in kuwaiti houses. the country has struggled to develop a context-based character due to the copying of greco-roman decoration. the project borrows the profiles that were used for extruded cornices and friezes for these homes, and morphs them, to produce and establish an identity that is rooted in kuwait’s migrant history, yet embraces its contemporary image. sponsored by becarre gallery and boubyan bank, with rendering assistance from lifang international, the installation visually narrates this story by showcasing functional objects in 3d that are made through lost foam-casting. desert cast is an exploration of locally available materials and fabrication methods to reach a local ‘maker’ identity.

desert cast explores kuwaiti identity in contemporary forms at dubai design week 2018

desert cast sculptural stools at the kuwait city pavilion as part of abwab, dubai design week 2018

desert cast explores kuwaiti identity in contemporary forms at dubai design week 2018

desert cast sculptural stools in their natural habitat – mutlaa desert in kuwait

desert cast explores kuwaiti identity in contemporary forms at dubai design week 2018

 

desert cast explores kuwaiti identity in contemporary forms at dubai design week 2018

desert cast explores kuwaiti identity in contemporary forms at dubai design week 2018

video by mohamad chehimi

desert cast explores kuwaiti identity in contemporary forms at dubai design week 2018
desert cast sculptural stools at as interior decor objects

desert cast explores kuwaiti identity in contemporary forms at dubai design week 2018

desert cast explores kuwaiti identity in contemporary forms at dubai design week 2018

desert cast explores kuwaiti identity in contemporary forms at dubai design week 2018

desert cast sculptural stools placed within classical architecture spaces

desert cast explores kuwaiti identity in contemporary forms at dubai design week 2018

 

 

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: lynne myers | designboom

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