Zayed University emerging designers participate in a furniture contest


June 1, 2016

A group of Zayed University young emerging designers from the College of Arts and Creative Enterprises (CACE) participated in a furniture design contest with a high quality work.

The competition is hosted by Vision Furniture and Decoration Factory, which was founded in 2003 and played a role in manufacturing and delivering high quality and innovative wooden works and furniture to the UAE market.  

The main purpose of the competition is to enable students to demonstrate a better understanding of furniture design processes, material connections, and related construction details in order to develop furniture prototypes.

Nineteen students enrolled in a furniture course at Zayed University, where they were encouraged to design a bespoke piece of furniture. The vision is to propose a forward looking, innovative and creative design proposal for a piece of furniture, as well as work out the furniture- making aspects.

The proposed furniture piece must hold the weight of one person with approximate average of 90kg. The selected furniture typology is left to the contestant’s decision.

Walid Saliba, Regional Business Development Manager at Vision Factory, said: “This is a good opportunity for us in the industry to coordinate and collaborate with education institutions within the local community, as part of our community service initiatives. CACE at Zayed University provides the perfect platform for the factory to engage with young emerging designers in the UAE and help prepare the workforce for creative industries in the country.”

Ann-Maree Reaney, Dean of the CACE, said: “CACE aims to develop graduates who are leaders and innovators in the field of art and design practice, graduates who will contribute significantly to the cultural fabric of the UAE. Our intensive and rigorous art, design, new media and exhibition programs are practice-based and industry-engaged. This furniture design project is one example of how interior design students engage with the [real] world of industry.”

Interior design students at Zayed University, who are part of this competitive contest, also expressed their excitement for collaborating with Vision Factory, which is supported with the latest state-of-art production equipment.

“It was very useful to interact with a manufacturer, and to directly discuss with him my design. The feedback is important to add a reality parameter to my design. Working with them gave me a sense of my future career. I think it was an amazing experience,” Salma Salem said.

Shaikha Almulla also pointed out that the experience of designing for a real client got students to focus more and motivated them to invest their best efforts in the competition.

“It was a huge inspiration for me, and we are excited for what’s coming next,” she added.

Additionally, Alia AlMazrooei expressed her excitement with the progress of her work, especially after collaborating with a high-standard manufacturer like Vision Factory.

“Collaborating with a high-standard manufacturer factory as a designer was an incredible experience for me. The journey of working with wood to design a bespoke furniture piece shed light on many guidelines I wasn’t aware of. The outcome of this project resulted in an exclusive bespoke  furniture piece from each group of students,” Alia added.

Lina Ahmad and Marco Sosa, Assistant Professors of Interior Design, supervised students during all phases of the contest.

Lina said: “We are grateful to Vision Factory for providing our students with such an opportunity; and enabling us to add a practical aspect to a classroom project. This has not only altered the classroom dynamics, but also increased our students’ enthusiasm.”

Additionally Sosa pointed out that CACE’s program of Interior Design at Zayed University provides students with the technical and conceptual skills to enter future professions once they graduate.

 “Collaborations with companies such as Vision Factory, equips our students with invaluable practical experience and insight in the industry,” he added.