Design: Craft meets contemporary

March 21, 2015

I have the pleasure of living in the wonderfully cosmopolitan city of Dubai. Many people complain that it isn’t culturally aware and diverse enough. Yet a lot is being done to change that with the likes of Art Dubai and Design Days Dubai.

Design Days Dubai is a grand fair held in Dubai and is dedicated to limited edition furniture and collectible objects. Leading international designers and galleries all come together in a beautiful venue in Downtown Dubai.

This Tuesday was actually my first time attending Design Days Dubai. I’ve been excited to see what it’s all about ever since I did my interior design courses, and especially since I heard Nada Debs, a Lebanese furniture designer and family friend, will be speaking.

For those of you who have never heard of Nada Debs, she’s a Lebanese designer particularly known for her beautiful blend of Middle Eastern and Far Eastern concepts. She is Lebanese but grew up in Japan, hence the Far East influence. She named it the “East & East” concept as it brings together the craftsmanship of the Middle Eastern culture along with the minimalism and contemporary design of the Far East.

The images below represent some of her stunning pieces. I personally wish I could have these in my own home.



I absolutely loved her interview. Her creative spirit and humble attitude are both easily conveyed in her beautiful pieces.

Craftsmanship would be a dying industry if it weren’t for people like Nada Debs reviving it and bringing it to light in a modern fashion.

She isn’t the only one. After walking around the various gallery displays I noticed a trend. The revival of pure craft. Not in just any form either. Each designer tried to embody craftsmanship in extremely modern pieces. I’ve included a few examples so you can see what I’m talking about. These pieces below are from the Fiona Barratt-Campbell gallery which is based in London. Notice the Roman inspiration with the cast bronze bases.




I wonder what other combinations can be made. Antique meets modern? Or maybe trash meets chic? This is definitely an area worth exploring.

Leave a Reply