dubai: designmania

if you'd mention dubai 25 years ago, the associations of the place abroad would have been rife with corny clichés. the emirate has come a long way and its current economic success isn't built on buckloads of petro dollars alone, but can for the most part be credited to the audacity and vision of its rulers. and yes, let's not forget the abundance of cheap labour that made it all happen. although it hasn't been a smooth ride all the way, dubai has been very successful in establishing itself as a leading, well-connected and stabile hub in a region that's turbulent in more ways than one. adding up to its reputation is the inaugural edition on mar 18-21 of design days dubai, the middle east's very first fair dedicated to high-end collectible and limited edition contemporary design. held in a specially constructed tent complex opposite the soaring burj khalifa, the planet's tallest structure, a total of 22 international galleries will present their finest trophies, in addition to two exclusive bespoke design companies. linked to the prestigious new event is art week, an elaborate cultural program that's not only held in dubai but also across the u.a.e. and qatar, and which aims to position the region as a place of directional artistic production and home to numerous cultural centres. location: sheikh zayed road [downtown].

© galerie downtown françois laffanour / jean prouvé's magnificent oak + aluminum cupboard is flown in for the showcase