Four finalists have been announced for the fourth edition of Middle East Emergent Designer Prize by Van Cleef & Arpels in collaboration with Tashkeel and Design Days Dubai, this year focusing on the theme of nature.
With a conference marking the shortlist of winners which took place in the Van Cleef & Arpels store at the Dubai Mall, this year’s shortlist of applicants includes designers Marta Krivosheek, Ranim Orouk, Michael Rice and Anjali Srinivasan.
Applicants were selected from various countries in the Middle East, many from the UAE itself, as well as entries from Egypt, Bahrain and Saudi Arabia.
This year’s theme, nature, aims to inspire designers to work with natural materials or forms which are native to their immediate surroundings.
Architect and jewelry designer Ranim Orouk’s design presents the concept of a traditionally glass blown chandelier that takes the form and function of the jellyfish, representing the effervescence of their texture and grouping. Each jellyfish head will hang on thin steel rods that will enhance the feeling of floating sea creatures.
Michael Rice, who specialises in ceramics and is also an associate professor of studio art at the American University in Dubai, has created a crystal bowl which is inspired by a spectrum of natural spiraling forms found in shells, DNA helix, sand ripples, and other similar concepts. He added that the piece may also be used as a modular piece where one can adapt and interchange its shape.
Architect and designer Marta Krivosheek was inspired by a combination of soap bubble experiments, steam wood bending techniques as well as the ‘shasha’, the traditional fishing boats used n the UAE and Oman, to create her submission – the Minimale Chair.
Lastly, Anjali Srinivasan presents a visual experience through her work ‘Vehicular Lens’, a rickshaw pod made up of multiple glass lenses which alter the surrounding images of space and light. The piece is an amalgamation of three local, nature-based inspirations, a flower-pod, sand and light.
The winning artwork will be announced in March during Dubai Design Days 2016 where the winner will win AED 30,000 to produce their design as well as receive a five day trip to Paris to attend courses at the L’ECOLE Van Cleef & Arpels.