“Fata Morgana” wins 6th edition of Abwab commission

By Backend Office, Desk Reporter
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The "Fata Morgana"

“Fata Morgana” of Iraqi designer Hozan Zangana won the 6th edition of the Abwab commission, an opportunity for regional designers to develop an architectural or design pavilion at Dubai Design District (d3) during Dubai Design Week.

Dubai Design Week is an annual event held to celebrate and promote design and creativity in Dubai.

“Fata Morgana,” made in close collaboration with Luuk Disveld from generous.studio and Joseph Crickett from WoodCast Designs, provides a conceptual framework for a city, in response to the theme of the role of installations in shaping public space. The idea is inspired by the UAE, with seven pillars representing each emirate, in-depth research contextualized its materials and production, with aesthetic nods to the desert.

Mr. Zangana said, “Fata Morgana is a phenomenon in the desert, a shimmering beacon in the distance. The installation provokes that same interest.”

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A side view image of Fata Morgana

The structure from WoodCast Designs is combined with reflective copper to capture the sunlight by using ancient adobe and rammed earth building techniques as a starting point.

The designers said that they focused on being organic in concept and production, “the output was a little bit out of our hands”.

“You can manipulate it, and we did, with pigment and the molds, but every brick that came out was a surprise. These imperfections made it very exciting to work with,” they added.

The establishment invites interest, close examination and discovery from the gathered public to experience a space designed for reflection and communication.

Although considering social distance precautions for COVID-19, the concept’s functionality seeks to amplify the need to cross the paths of each other by posing a pivotal intersection, requiring contact between individuals and reactivating the link on a social level with each other.

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An ariel view of “Fata Morgana”

“The installation, with different levels in height, can be seen as a skyline with the seven pillars in the middle and the smaller ones around them. The center is where people connect,” noted Mr. Zangana.

The designers stated, “It was an important insight that although we are separated because of coronavirus or cultural backgrounds, we have to find a way to create connections.”

The installation provides each visitor with a safe and comfortable feeling with its mindful nature. While being seated in the pavilion the visitors sit facing each other and they are forced to look at each other and at that point the social interaction begins between unknown persons.