Archive for September, 2011

Bokja Design : Arab _ Fall


October 4th – 20th , 2011

Recognizing as always its deep roots in the region and the wider Levant, and inspired by the wave of social and political developments sweeping the Arab world, ‘Bokja Design’ will show a series of globes and two installations at an event entitled “ Arab _ Fall” at the Sultan Gallery in Kuwait during the period from 4th – 20th October, 2011.

‘Bokja Design’ chose to represent solely Arab countries, and to stretch them out on a complete globe – challenging an instantly recognizable icon. By presenting the map of the Arab world in different colorfully upholstered designs, the series of globes essentially aim to draw attention to the region as a seething macrocosm of change and to express the extent of its sweep and diversity.

The globes are complemented by two installations; one of which shows the Arab world as-is. Another parallel and facing wall-hanging will show the map through according to Bokja; interpreted through the prism of what will come.

Bokja has always been an active commentator on the Lebanese social and political situation, so it is only natural that the scope be extended.  Following the assassination of Prime Minister Rafik Hariri, and in the wake of the demonstrations that ensued, ‘Bokja Design’ created a series of furniture commemorating those events. Similarly, in the wake of the Israeli invasion of 2006, a special salute was given to displaced citizens, by upholstering pieces in the colorful fabrics that were seen piled up on cars fleeing the south.

About Bokja

Bokja* was established in the year 2000 by Lebanese designers Hoda Baroudi and Maria Hibri who brought a similar passion for detail and history to the furniture, which they create under the same name. Baroudi and Hibri source furniture designs from the 50s, 60s and 70s, unearthed in Beirut’s flea-markets and antique dealerships, and then cover them with exuberant tapestries and textiles from the Levant and the legendary Silk Road countries of Central Asia. Combining ancient culture with repurposed modern design, Bokja is creating one-of-a-kind pieces that offer an explosion of color, pattern and a richly textured sense of history.

In 2009, Bokja was chosen to be featured in Li-Edelkoort’s (founder and former director of Eindhoven School of Design) retrospective, where she highlighted what she judged to be the most important themes that have influenced trends in fashion, photography, and design. Other designers in the exhibit included Marcel Wanders, Christian Lacroix, Studio Job, the Campana brothers and Philippe Starck, to mention a few. Li Edelkoort is one of the world’s most renowned trend forecasters. In 2003 TIME Magazine named her one of the world’s 25 Most Influential People in Fashion, and in 2004 she was listed in Icon as one of the 21 Most Important People in Design.

At Salone 2010, they presented the “Conversation Sofas” 2 curved sofas positioned face to face in an “S” shape and boasting beautiful vintage and contemporary fabrics from around the world. The project celebrates the narratives and experiences that make up a sofa.  The idea is that the object – in this case the sofa – is the moment from which conversations between time and place emerge, and that these narratives and stories don’t cease to exist with the object, but go on to live beyond it.

The Sotheby’s Material Worlds Exhibition 2011 brought together cutting-edge, one-off and limited edition works in strikingly different materials by 11 artists and designers. Among which Bokja’ s duo Hoda Baroudi and Maria Hibri presented the giant Queen Bees that were made from recycled metal and vintage fabric and were designed to highlight the plight the rapid depletion of the world’s bee population. The juxtaposition of these overtly 21st century works in the medieval setting of Sudeley Castle created a dramatic impact.