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Sleek & steely

January 12 - January 18, 2022
Gulf Weekly Sleek & steely
Gulf Weekly Sleek & steely

Gulf Weekly Mai Al Khatib-Camille
By Mai Al Khatib-Camille

The Bahrain National Pavilion’s sleek and steely chairs have caught the attention of renowned creatives and curators from around the world, resulting in the designers winning an international award for having the ‘best metal structure’.

The ‘Tila Chair’ won the ‘Metal Morphosis’ category in the annual British magazine’s Wallpaper* Design Award 2022 that celebrates the very best products, people and places over the past 12 months.

The chair design was commissioned by Bahrain Authority for Culture and Antiquities (Baca) to be used in its ‘Density Weaves Opportunity’ pavilion in Expo 2020 Dubai.

 “It’s an absolute honour to win such a prestigious award and to place Bahrain’s ever-growing design scene on the global map,” said Rashed AlAraifi, one of the three designers of the stylish seating and co-founders of Shepherd Studio, alongside Ahmed AlMannai and Abdulla Binhindi.

The trans-disciplinary design practice has worked on a number of projects between Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Dubai and the UK.

 “Wallpaper* is considered by many in the profession to be the world’s number one global design destination, championing the best in architecture, interiors, fashion, art and contemporary lifestyle,” added Rashed.

“We aim to continue to make our nation proud by adding value to the social, cultural and environmental fabrics in which we live.”

The hand-finished chair - composed of 210 stainless steel spheres to create the slick style - borrows its conceptual and aesthetic language from the traditional folk game of ‘tila’, an Arabic version of marbles.

“The design combines the communal nature of the game and its components as a metaphor for density,” added Rashed. “The array of entwined spheres shape the skin of the object, coupled by tubular profiles which creates its anatomy. Its chrome finish is intended to complement and reflect its context and surroundings.

“We are always aiming to provide creative schemes that range from architectural, spatial, digital and product-based outcomes.

“We would like to thank Baca president Shaikha Mai bint Mohammed Al Khalifa for her continuous support and trusting in our design to be part of the national pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai.”

The Bahrain National Pavilion ‘Density Weaves Opportunity’ is open until March 2022, presenting periodic installation works on show for two months, inspired by weaving crafts and highlighting the kingdom’s heritage.

The pavilion’s ‘Narrative of History’ exhibition, which started on Monday, will run until February 16 and the last themed exhibition, called ‘Sustainable Cities’, will run from February 17 to March 31.

For details, follow @cutlurebah, @bahpavilion and on Instagram

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