Madar: the exhibition-research

The curator Ghassan Salameh talks about the exhibition at Downtown Editions: a selection of works that investigate the different passages in the region that lead to the production of a design object

Appointment at Downtown Editions. The Madar exhibition is curated by Ghassan Salameh, also a guest curator of Dubai Design Week, and brings together a selection of designer projects based in the Middle East. The initiative also aims to be a sharing platform for the exchange of knowledge related to design. To investigate the issue, we interviewed Ghassan Salameh.

What are the selection criteria for the Madar exhibition?
Madar is an initiative supported by d3. It will shed light on the current state of regional design and the emerging movements from design-active cities in the region as well as present new works and innovations from emerging and established designers. The exhibition is not quite an open call selection, instead it is a curated exhibition that aims to develop a narrative and the vision of the curator, in this case myself. The concept of the exhibition is to enable the chosen designers from the region to share with the international audiences their execution of the creative design journeys. It will be a  forum where the design products are explored from the conception to the completion.

What is your intention for the Madar exhibition and hopes for regional design?
The intention for Madar is to create awareness around what is happening in the design sector of different regions. The idea is to bring forward the works of these designers and to showcase the creative effort that they had been cultivating in their respective fields. For example the designers who are working for the Non Profit Organizations are introduced, striving to encourage the future generations of designers to go into supporting such initiatives. Dubai is the hub of creativity and with the massive increase in international visitors coming to the Dubai Design Week, Madar aims to break the any stereotype attached with design innovation from the this part of the world. It is an avenue for the world to come and witness the nature of designs that are produced by our designers. Our designers are discussing resolving issues of climate change to even coming up with creative solutions to help the local economies and societies. The ground breaking design innovations of the Arab World is the key focus of Madar.

How do you support and encourage the business opportunities for regional participants and visitors?
This year with Madar we not only focus on the exhibition but also the required programs that will support designers in terms of training, mentorship and workshops. There are mentorship sessions, where the designers can access advice and information relating to pricing their products and also the legalities of marketing their designs. We are helping the designers to shape their ideas into successful business plans.