Ellington highlights local talent with the unveiling of unique art installation by AUS students in Belgravia II

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Impressive sculpture is part of 92 art pieces created by the students of American University of Sharjah’s Interior Design & Photography Department

As an art and design-led property developer, Ellington is committed to working with universities and schools to support youth talent in art and design


Ellington, Dubai’s leading design-led property developer, has put the spotlight on local artistic and design talent with the unveiling of a collection of 92 art works by the students of American University of Sharjah’s Interior Design & Photography Department at Belgravia II in Jumeirah Village Circle.

The artworks, which include a compelling ceiling installation named ‘Hamama’, in the main lobby of Belgravia II, was officially unveiled at a ceremony held at the newly-handed over residential community. The senior management of Ellington, the Dean, faculty and students of American University of Sharjah and the residents of Belgravia II attended the unveiling.

The central art installation is part of over 92 art works showcased by the students, including over 90 creative black and white photographs with gold and silver leafing, themed ‘unveiled’ that add to the elegant setting of the residential destination.

Under the guidance of Dr. Varkki Pallathucheril, Dean of the American University of Sharjah’s College of Architecture, Art and Design (CAAD) and mentored by Juan Roldán, Assistant Professor and Chair of the Interior Design Steering Committee at AUS and other teaching faculty, the students created the sculpture and other artworks.

The students associated with the art installation are Mariam AlJuwaied, Priyanka Soni, Rima Chalha, Sana Fathima and Camilo Cerro, with the support of Bishoy Girgis at CAAD Labs, while Aisha Alyassi was responsible for the art direction and photography of the photographic works.

The specially commissioned art project was executed over six months, which included planning and preliminary design, while the actual installation of ‘Hamama’ on-site took only one full day. More than four students were involved in the sculptural work, working an average of two hours a day and sourcing all materials locally.

‘Hamama’, challenges the materiality of the acrylic it´s made from and becomes an organic expression of a controlled agitation of a flock of doves, which sprouts from its core. It is made up of tri-part units that have been heat-bent into dynamic shapes and linked together to generate its visual dynamism. The design team designed, fabricated and tested several prototypes of the pieces taking advantage of the facilities housed within the College of Architecture, Art and Design.

‘unveiled’ features a series of photographs that are based on the UAE’s beauty – from its cityscape sand dunes to peculiar details that perhaps go unnoticed. Each photograph plays a role in revealing a certain concealed beauty within the country through the use of incandescent textures.

Robert Booth, Managing Director of Ellington, said: “We are thankful to the faculty and students of American University of Sharjah for the passion, enthusiasm and commitment to undertaking this project. By commissioning local and upcoming talent, especially from the student community, we are highlighting our focus on engaging the community to support our goal of creating exceptionally designed communities.”

“We believe that the hands-on involvement of the students in real-world residential projects will add to their knowledge base and confidence while we benefit from the creativity and spirit of innovation that marks the new generation. We look forward to partnering with more universities and educational institutions on similar projects, thereby offering tangible platforms to promote industry-academia linkages that support the student community,” added Booth.

Dr. Varkki Pallathucheril, Dean of the American University of Sharjah’s College of Architecture, said: “The quality of our lives is definitely influenced by design and arts in profound ways. That is why at the College of Architecture, Art and Design of AUS, we are focused on exploring the transformative potential of design. The opportunity for our students to work with Ellington on Belgravia II has indeed been a rewarding exercise for them, as it opened doors for them to reimagine the possibility of design in lifestyle communities. Such support from the industry is invaluable as it further prepares our students for future careers. Ellington has set a model in how academic learning and practical experience of our students can be leveraged for positively influencing the community.”

Located centrally in Jumeirah Village Circle, the aesthetically designed Belgravia II has now come to life with 188 homes handed over. At the heart of the community is a central courtyard, which features a swimming pool, children’s play area, fitness studio and dedicated yoga centre. The development comprises studio, one, two and three-bedroom apartments, as well as two-storey, two-bedroom private townhouses, each with enclosed private terraces.

Other properties in Ellington’s Belgravia series include the popular Belgravia Square, which was launched late last year, and Belgravia Heights II, launched in June 2018. Ellington’s development portfolio includes DT1, located in close proximity to Downtown Dubai and Business Bay, and scheduled for hand-over this year.

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