Dubai 2020 – Like a portal to the cultural heritage of MENASA – Middle East, North Africa and South Asia -, the Abwab pavilion at Dubai Design Week always offers an insight into the region’s rich design scene. This year, Iraqi designer Hozan Zangana has created the Fata Morgana landmark installation at the heart of Dubai Design District (d3), addressing city dwellers’ ever-changing relationship within a physical distancing public realm.
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At the center of the installation is a large and convivial circular table inspired by the traditional way people meet and come together. The table is the epicenter of an open-plan arrangement of towers and public seatings, all made according to traditional rammed earth techniques. Inspired by Middle Eastern construction techniques, the seven pillars come with its different height and represent the UAE’s seven emirates are.
Fata Morgana was entirely created during quarantine and adapts to today’s requirement for physical distancing, while offering strong research on regionally contextual materials and production processes.
“The functionality of the concept aims to amplify the necessity to cross each other’s paths by presenting a pivotal intersection, demanding for interaction between people and reactivating the connection with each other on a safe social level.” Says Hozan Zangana to Archipanic.
“Fata Morgana is very dear to me for two reasons. The first one is the chance to team up with Generous Studio and Woodcast Designs to bring together the art of design, architecture, craftsmanship and cultural heritage. The second reason is that it brings back vivid memories from my childhood.”
“I remember riding on the top of a large truck in Iraq in the heat of summer. My family was traveling to Bagdad, to visit our relatives and due to the war, this was the only way we could reach them. As I would sit on the top of the truck and look back in the distance, the heat would distort the scenery and create different shapes and forms. The colors would melt together and there was no way of telling if the image was real or not. Almost like a trance, as if my life was a movie.”
All photos: courtesy of Dubai Design Week and ©Hozan Zangana.