Design. It’s a favourite topic of ours, and this annual Design Edition is the one we look forward to most of all. This year we handed over the reins to Amira Behbehani and asked her to curate a few of the most eloquent and erudite of the region’s design ambassadors for us to explore. With the select grouping of Jassim, Aseel, Abdulla and Ghada, we’d say she’s pretty much nailed the Zeitgeist of regional art-led design today. All-in-all, it makes for happy reading here, and in print with a copy of Men’s Passion magazine.
She’s known to most simply as an artist. But this is by those who know only the thinnest veneer of Amira Behbehani, her life, her talents and her passions. Artist – yes… but it goes deeper than that. Through her continuous exploration as an artist, she delves in to the spheres of architecture, design and curation. Her curiosity takes her throughout the region – where she’s a well-known and respected commentator, and a true aesthete. She was a natural choice as curator and guest editor for our special annual Design Edition. She has a clear eye upon Kuwait and also across the Middle East.
She’s passionate about her country and her people, and is excited by the dynamism and level of work that is currently being created. However, she knows that to achieve greatness for the region, we must work together and follow a common path of openness and creativity, and that it takes five fingers to make a hand. Amira Behbehani’s introduces her special selection for The Design Edition.
“I relate on a personal level to their work. They move me – I feel emotional about their work. I believe in them. I believe that each and every one of them is creating something of value for our society. They’re all people that I can talk to and who I can feel what they mean… what they’re aiming to deliver… in their work.
I first met Jassim Al Saddah back in the 90s when he came to me with a project – I was working at Boushahri at the time. The project was a model that needed photographing – I knew even then that he’d be a great architect. Aseel Al Yaqoub is extremely talented. I love the way she builds her concepts and ideas – and then executes them patiently, and to perfection. Aseel has a depth and curiosity which I find very rare these days. She’s very professional on every level.
I met Ghada Khunji through Facebook, and we became very good friends. I love her work, I love her personality. She is a very strong and deep artist. All of my selection for this special edition have depth to their work – this is very important to me. The continuity of this, and to see them taking it to different levels – they all do this and they know it’s important to not to stick at one level and never move – is essential for the creation of enduring work.
Abdulla Al Awadi has moved in to different categories of work. He’s remained true to his values, but experiments with different media. I like this a lot. It’s important for artists and designers to work this way in the modern world.”