Remember how exciting it was when we first saw pictures of Masdar City in the United Arab Emirates. Masdar is the futuristic terra-cotta curvy buildings designed by Foster & Partners? Well, the same design team is behind the United Arab Emirate’s solar-powered 2015 Milan Expo Pavilion and it features a host of groundbreaking technology.
We love Etsy as much as anyone, but we also feel it is our duty to support local efforts to collate cool design, handmade arts and crafts. CIRQY from Egypt does just that.
Residents of Abu Dhabi might be familiar with buildings made from palm leaves and earth, but cardboard? Legendary Japanese architect Shigeru Ban built Design Souq – a mobile, recyclable pavilion made entirely out of cardboard that is every bit as sturdy as brick or stone.
What’s it like to live on a boat? In such cramped spaces and always subject to nature’s whim, otherwise reasonable people can go mad if they don’t get cooperate. Acrojou explores the idea through a fascinating theatrical circus genre that is trending – even in Lebanon.
Israeli designer Omer Polak has designed an adorable wearable vase that keeps a flower or herbs close to the wearer’s chest. The Boutonnière is a lapel pin made from blown glass attached to clothing via a small brass pin.
A consortium of Japanese architects got together to protest Zaha Hadid’s winning design for the main stadium of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, and despite all her fame and glory, the Japanese government listened.
So many countries in the Middle East and North Africa rely way too much on concrete for their building needs, but Libya Design bucks the trend with Doshma – a new creative hub built in part with a used shipping container.
Who isn’t in love with Moroccan decor – the amazing colors and designs that enliven any room? Well, Justina Blakeney certainly is. So much so, she decked out an entire AirBnB popup home in Los Angeles with decor from our favorite North African destination.
Meb Rure’s latest line of furniture is so bright, stylish and unique that it’s hard to believe they are made with almost all recycled materials.
We love everything about Sukkot, especially the philosophy and process behind the inspiring sukkah (booth) that Jews build during this week-long Autumnal holiday. But we’ve never seen one on the back of a tricycle.
Japan has won the bid to host the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo and Zaha Hadid has been picked to retrofit its National Stadium. First designed for the 1964 Summer Games, this new stadium boasts a few green credentials.
Israeli photographer Gabi Menashe loves outdated artifacts so much, he takes them apart, “one bolt, spring, button at a time,” and then artfully assembles the pieces for photographs published on his website Taking Apart.
Absurdly tall skyscrapers, overfishing and other environmental issues tarnish Dubai’s green image, but projects such as the new Reyoutilizer app at least makes recycling a bit easier.
Whereas most people would scarcely give a pile of old keys a second glance, the Vanina girls from Lebanon see in these disused materials new life as glittering jewelry.
Caravan Collective is a fresh new cycling apparel studio from Israel that fuses quirky graphic design with a passion for cycling, people, and the earth.
Dublin’s Heneghan Peng has designed a new museum for Palestine that is topped with a series of unfolding green terraces planted with vegetation that also grows in the surrounding hills.
The Dead Sea garnered international attention when photographer Spencer Tunick assembled a gang of naked nature enthusiasts for a controversial photo shoot, but the momentum has since died down. Paris-based Sitbon Architectes attempts to re-galvanize our attention with their award-winning design Cristal – The Dead Sea Gem.
The same Italian design firm that designed a fleet of eco-schools for Gaza has won an international competition to design the headquarters of Algeria’s telecommunications firm ARPT (Autorité de Régulation de la Poste et des Télécommunications).
Zaha Hadid’s flowing architecture instantly sprung to mind when we came across Zaid Bin Talib’s design proposal for an Iraqi embassy in Oslo. Daring, futuristic, and swooping, the design appears to be influenced by Iraq’s most famous architect’s style, except the Oslo School of Architecture and Design student’s work is so much greener.
When news of a $10 bicycle made of recycled cardboard first reached our desk, we didn’t think it would ever see the light of day, but in two days, Cardboard Technologies has already raised a whopping $16,070 on its Indiegogo campaign to mass produce what Popular Science Magazine called one of the best inventions of 2013.
Orlando De Urrutia has designed what he says is the world’s first building to get its water from the air. Called the Water Building Resort and powered by a facade of building integrated photovoltaics, the mixed-use structure designed for Dubai is shaped to resemble a water drop.
If you are a designer eager to find more sustainable material choices for your creative inventions, you might want to hit the BioCouture workshop during Beirut Design Week.
The ongoing Syrian conflict has put refugees at their highest number since 1994 – a terrible year for the people of Rwanda and Yugoslavia; this year – in time for World Refugee Day – IKEA and the UN refugee agency (UNHCR) have unveiled a solar-powered home.
World Environment Day festivities came to a close on Friday, June 7 in Qatar as participants in the celebration’s green competitions were crowned winners. The message of the celebration is to save resources for future generations, an important message for the emirate hooked on natural gas and cheap non-renewable resources.
Diamond Developers selected Baharash Architecture to plan the second of four phases of Dubai Sustainable City – a 46 hectare, 500 villa eco-development slated for construction at the junction of Al Qudra and Emirates Roads in Dubai.
Tall glass buildings have come to dominate the Dubai and Abu Dhabi skylines, which makes absolutely zero sense given that summer temperatures consistently burst their seams in the region. But now the UAE has imported NASA-developed transparent panels that deflect heat back into the atmosphere.
Thinking and living in tune with nature is a way of life that is best started as early as possible, which is why we think there ought to be more schools like The Green School in Kfar Saba, Israel.
Qatar’s controversial 2022 World Cup planning got a burst of star power when renowned Iraqi architect Zaha Hadid, who was one of Time Magazine’s top 100 most influential people in 2010, was appointed to join AECOM to design the Al Wakrah Stadium.
Cigarette butts are gross – whether they drift onto beaches, pollute our waterways, or endanger wildlife. But many cities in the Middle East, where smoking remains common, neglect to provide outlets for residents to discard their stinky stubs. That’s why three Lebanese electrical engineering students designed Urbin – a sleek disposal unit.
Oman is a small nation bordering Abu Dhabi on the Arabian peninsula; it has a long coastline and one of the largest populations of endangered Loggerhead turtles on earth. It also subsidizes energy and water, essentially arresting any kind of sustainable development. There’s no incentive to conserve something that comes for free – until now.