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Ithra brings its Faseelah pavilion to Saudi Design Festival

Images Courtesy of Ithra

The King Abdulaziz Center for World Culture (Ithra) is excited to present its Faseelah pavilion at the much-anticipated inaugural Saudi Design Festival (SDF), held January 10-29, 2022 in Riyadh. The pavilion is the winning design outcome of the Tanween Architectural Challenge “Building Simplexcity” which seeks to overcome the construction complexities commonly associated with digital design through the simplest of means, using digital design tools to root the work back in human-centered construction reality. The space forms the hub for Ithra’s SDF activities.

Ithra, a catalyst for creativity in the Kingdom and beyond, is a platinum sponsor of SDF, which aims to support and develop Saudi’s cultural and creative sector. A leading incubator for creatives, Ithra’s creativity season Tanween is focused on delivering economic and social change by promoting the industry through offering creatives opportunities to connect with peers and experts, develop new skills and learn to apply their creative and innovation talents. As part of Tanween Season, Ithra opens the door for creatives to unleash their potential through Tanween Challenges. It provide its participants with the opportunity to go that extra step and apply their innovation and creative skillset to a live project. Using specially curated briefs, they allow for participants to work directly with established partners to create a tangible outcome.

Faseelah showcases that creativity. Designed by Lujain Alatiq, Laian Abussaud, Sara AlMaddah and Lama Dardas with the support of the challenge partners Dr Kristoff Crolla, University of Hong Kong, and Attken Do it Center (Al Bawardi Group). The Faseelah pavilion celebrates Saudi Arabia’s palm tree heritage, exploring the leaf and the trunk as core elements in its design. Its structure is formed by alternately rising planks repeated to create a step-like texture. The resulting latticework reflects the essence of a leaf and presents the illusion of light streaming through palm fonds. The pavilion’s spatial experience and unique geometry encourages a dialogue between the indoors and its surrounding landscape.

Spearheaded by the team behind the Saudi Design Week, SDF envelops the Design Week, presenting the exhibitions as a tribute to the designers and the spaces they inhabit in addition to the DE/FUNCT functional design installations that focus on how design can be used to innovate, blend and disrupt our everyday lives and public spaces and the Design Market. The event furthermore encompasses the Design Forum with talks, masterclasses and workshops by local, regional and international speakers.

Since 2018, Tanween has motivated, inspired and prepared a new generation of innovators to become the leaders of a new creative tomorrow. Tanween offers a transformative experience, the latest industry insights, emerging and established talent and the opportunities for them to connect. Since its first season, Tanween welcomed more than 200,000 visitors with more than 150 speakers, 30 exhibits and installations, and more than 140 workshops and masterclasses.

For more information on Ithra and its programs, visit

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