New York’s REX architecture studio has designed a pair of skinny media towers that feature ‘blooming’ Mashrabiya sunscreens that protect against excess solar gain. Mashrabiya is an old Arabian architectural practice to passively cool hot desert buildings.
With Masdar City, Foster & Partners was the first international architecture firm to design buildings in Abu Dhabi that borrow from the region’s desert-savvy vernacular. Now they are continuing that tradition with the Zayed National Museum on Al Saadiyat Island, which will sport five wing-shaped solar thermal towers when completed.
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.
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.