After a typically quiet summer in the UAE, demand has heightened for engaging, insightful platforms where the design community can learn and discover new ideas and industry innovations coming to the region.
Quenching this thirst for knowledge before Dubai Design Week hits town, a new initiative called Knowledge Forum launched earlier this month thanks to four leading Dubai-based companies, Mirage, Herman Miller, Artemide and Zip Water. The first forum presented new insights from the companies’ respected fields of expertise – porcelain stoneware, office furniture, lighting, and water filtration systems – to a select crowd of architects and interior designers at Herman Miller’s conference area in Marina Plaza, Dubai Marina.
Those attending came from home-grown boutique practices such as Pallavi Dean Interiors and S2 INTERIORS, international firms such as LW Design and Perkins + Will, plus luxury retail partner Chalhoub Group, bringing together a diverse mix of professionals.
Commenting during the event on Instagram, Sneha Divias, Design Director at S2 INTERIORS, said the Knowledge Forum was an “informative evening session with three of my favourite brands for tiles, furniture and lighting. Looking forward to the next one.”
Tanya Pearson, General Manager of Mirage Middle East, based in Dubai Design District (d3), says: “We recognised a dearth in the design industry for engaging ways of learning about new advances in various areas of manufacturing, so we approached three other companies that – like us – continually bring new, innovative products to the market here in the Middle East.
“We feel that it’s important that designers here know of the kinds of technological and sustainable advances that can enhance the way our homes, offices, hotels, restaurants, shops etc, can be designed and used. Launching the Knowledge Forum initiative gives us the platform to do this.”
During the design talks, Mirage highlighted the key strengths of porcelain stoneware and the weaknesses that no longer exist; Herman Miller provided fresh insights into the ergonomics of furniture design that respect social boundaries in the workplace; Italian lighting manufacturers Artemide focused on the scientific and aesthetical relationship between lighting design and colour; lastly, Zip Water revealed the new eco-friendly water filtration systems now available across the Middle East, which has a high ROI for end users.
All images courtesy of Mirage Middle East