Design Space AlUla

The vibrant space encouraging collaboration in design will debut at the AlUla Arts Festival.

February 2024 will welcome Design Space AlUla at AlJadidah Arts District, serving as a hub for displaying diverse design initiatives that contribute to AlUla’s vision. This space, under the guidance of Sara Ghani, offering exhibition, workshop, and archive facilities, aims to encourage collaboration among design professionals, students, and enthusiasts across the globe.

Through a series of exhibitions, workshops, and archives, the space aims to delve into design principles and creative processes, drawing inspiration from AlUla’s natural, cultural and wider economic surroundings. Positioned as a catalyst for creative inspiration and design, it will kick off with the exhibition “Mawrid: Celebrating Inspired Design.” It will unveil the design thinking process behind ten recent projects influenced by AlUla, spanning design, architecture, and urban planning. This inaugural showcase, running from February 15 to June 1, 2024, initiates a continuous exhibition program.

Highlighted projects include the Maraya by Giò Forma Studio/Black Engineering, a 9,740m² mirror-clad venue seamlessly blending with AlUla’s natural textures; Hopkins Architects’ plans for the renovation of Madrasat Addeera, Roth Architecture’s Azulik Eco Resort inspired by wind and erosion stories; SAL Architects’ respectful transformation of the historic Ammar Bin Yasser Mosque; and the Cultural Oasis District Masterplan by Prior + Partners in collaboration with Allies and Morrison, all sharing a commitment to preserving AlUla’s cultural and natural heritage.

“Design Space AlUla commits to celebrating AlUla’s natural history, its cultural heritage, and vernacular materials – inspiring sustainable futures that are rooted in place. Our ambition is to fuel the design economy, provide resources to designers to explore and experiment, and be a place for visitors to research, explore and connect with the processes behind AlUla’s design journey.”

– Sara Ghani, Curator of Design Space AlUla

The exhibition also includes participants from the second instalment of the AlUla Design Award, namely Imane Mellah, Teeb, Sara Kanoo, and Shaddah Studio. The showcase also features contributions from the inaugural AlUla Design Residency, a five-month program uniting designers and experts to collaborate on various disciplines such as infrastructure development, architectural design, public realm interventions, urban furniture, sustainability, and local building materials. The residency involves collaborations such as a Bahraini-Danish partnership, Hall Haus from France, Studio Leo Orta from France, Studio Raw Material from India, and Leen Ajlan from Saudi Arabia.

Additionally, the exhibition delves into the visual identity for Design Space AlUla, crafted by Clara Sancho Studio and design agency 29Letters from Madrid. The logo draws inspiration from various elements, encompassing ancient inscriptions at Jabal Ikmah, distinctive breezeblocks in AlJadidah, and other architectural features in AlUla’s contemporary visual landscape.

For more information on Design Space AlUla, visit here.

Sakina Juzar, a journalist specializing in culture and lifestyle, possesses an enthusiasm for the art of narrative and meticulous documentation. Her craft delves into a combination of fashion, culture, and society, both within the Middle East and on a global scale and provide a unique perspective for the same. Furthermore, Sakina curates an Instagram blog, @thelockedword, where she indulges in poetry and discourse on mental well-being.
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