Maraya Art Centre announces the opening of Islamopolitan, a collective design exhibition, which will run from 4 June-23 August. The event will examine the ongoing creative dialogue between Islam and design.
Founder of design firm Khalid Shafar, Curators Khalid Shafar and Maraya Art Centre Manager, Giuseppe Moscatello put out an open call for submissions and selected inventive works by emerging and established local, regional, and international designers with practices that engage with Islam as a profound design influence rather than a purely decorative or religious designation.
The term "Islamopolitan" is not to be found in the dictionary, and was conceived by the exhibition's curators to define the artistic journey and the final results that come about when Islam's ethos inspires contemporary designers to craft work that addresses both form and functionality.
Speaking about "Islamopolitan", Giuseppe Moscatello said, "Maraya Art Centre aims to organise and host boundary-pushing exhibitions and we are proud to present our first design-related show in celebration of Sharjah's designation as 2014 Capital of Islamic Culture. Through this project we are giving emerging designers the chance to showcase work that explores the unique relationship between Islam and design. Maraya is shedding light on local and regional design talent in recognition of the field that is rapidly developing due in large part to the UAE's strong higher education programmes in architecture and design." Giuseppe added; "as part of the centre's mission to provide a platform for people of different nationalities to communicate and interface, the exhibition will present pieces belonging to a variety of design schools and cultural milieus".
Emirati designer, Khalid Shafar underlined that "Islamopolitan seeks to highlight how design can access the depths of Islamic culture to inspire outstanding and relevant pieces." He added, "This collective design exhibition will shed light on the influence of Islamic values on designers, their perspectives on life's details, and talent for translating these values into fully functional design. The individual pieces each highlight the Islamic spirit but leave the issue of interpretation up to the viewer." The exhibition, which will welcome the public free of charge, will give visitors the opportunity to explore themes of worship, architecture and behaviours from a design perspective and in consideration of Islam's rich history.