The Kuwait Embassy in Japan

Posted by Mark

kenzo

A completely random but interesting fact, I recently found out the beautifully designed Kuwait Embassy in Japan (pictured above) was designed by the same legendary architect behind the original Kuwait Airport, Kenzo Tange. The building was built in 1966, 13 years before the Kuwait Airport.

via @kashkool_kw

Note: If you click the original Kuwait Airport link you can see photos of how the Kuwait Airport originally looked like.

kuwaitairport


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New Kuwait Airport Website

Posted by Mark

airportwebsite

The Kuwait Airport website was recently majorly revamped. The website visually looks a lot more cleaner and modern with the most important information, the arrivals and departures timings now clearly displayed as soon as you enter. According to the website theres also a mobile application coming and WiFi will soon be free throughout the airport. Check out the revamped website [Here]

To take a look at previous designs, here’s how the website looked in [2007] and [2011]

Thanks Abdulwahab


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Kuwait Ranked 16th in World Design Rankings

Posted by Mark

secrethouse

The World Design Rankings is based on the number of designers that have been granted an A’ Design Award. Kuwait is ranked 16th (which is pretty high) mostly because of AGi Architects who’ve won 14 awards so far. AGi are the guys behind projects like the Secret House pictured up top and the Star House pictured below.

starhouse

I absolutely hate the architecture of residential buildings in Kuwait so it’s always great seeing how buildings can be beautiful in Kuwait if they’re done right. Check out all their projects on their website [Here] and their Facebook page [Here]


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Silkscreen printing supplies

Posted by Mark

silk1

This is just a quick post for anyone that’s interested in silkscreen printing. I found a small place in Shuwaikh that sells pre-stretched aluminum screens in various sizes along with squeegees and silkscreen ink.

silk2

The prices are pretty reasonable, I picked up a small sized screen with a squeegee for KD11. The screen alone was KD7 which is a bit cheaper than the KD7.5 I paid for my wooden screen of similar size which I had purchased from Dasman Complex. The inks cost KD5 per color but each can will probably last you forever since you only need such a small amount to print. They also had metalic colors like gold and silver but I think they were for KD12.5.

silk3

The store is called Bin Naji and their phone number is 24929993/4. They’re located next to the Shuwaikh police station and here it is on [Google Maps]


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6 1/2 Days of Nuqat – A Photographic Diary

Posted by Mark

A beautifully produced flip-book of memories from the 2013 Nuqat Conference that was held in Kuwait last month. [YouTube]

If you’re interested in the tech behind the film, it was shot by Tarek Jammal with a Canon 5D Mark III using the 24-70mm f/2.8 Sigma lens. The film was composed of around 9,000 photos and they were color corrected in Alien Exposure before compiling them in a Mac app called Time-Lapse and then edited in iMovie.


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Donate a wall and help make Kuwait colorful

Posted by Mark

This is an interesting initiative, instead of illegally spray painting on private property, a bunch of graffiti artists are looking for people who are willing to donate a wall to spray on. The general idea is they want to make Kuwait a more colorful place and graffiti is one way of going about it. The group have only two requirements, one being that the wall has to be outdoor, and two is that they won’t graffiti any sort of advert. If you’re a property owner and are interested in donating a wall contact AbdulRazzaq on alshamali@razzag.com

via @razzag_


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Reza Abedini at Dar Al-Funoon

Posted by Mark

Reza Abedini, is an Iranian designer and a professor of graphic design and visual culture at Tehran University. Abedini is one of the most famous graphics designer in Iran because of his modern Persian typography.

Date: Monday November 11th, 2013
Time: 6PM
Location: Dar Al Funoon [Map]

Here’s a link to the [Invite]


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The story behind the Kuwait Airways logo

Posted by Mark

The above is a preliminary sketch of the Kuwait Airways logo sketched by then acting CEO Harry Pusey in 1958. Pusey was inspired by a bird ready to leave a tree branch while at a cafe in Beirut. This is what he had to say about the logo:

While designing the logo, I had to review the company’s image and develop a new logo and brand identity. Therefore the bird with its beak held high, reflecting my hope that to whichever destinations KU aircraft may fly, it must always be safe in the sky and there must not be any accidents.

The logo is still used by Kuwait Airways today.

I took the photo above from @kuwaitairways where they also posted the picture below which is a view from the Safir Airport Hotel. That’s an amazing view.


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eL Seed Does Kuwait

Posted by Mark


[YouTube]

As part of his world tour, the popular French-Tunisian street artist eL Seed was in Kuwait and tagged his work on the rooftop of an abandoned building.

eL Seed’s graffiti incorporates traditional Arabic calligraphy, a style he calls ‘calligraffiti’. You can check out more of his work on his website [Here]


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My apartment makeover

Posted by Mark

Back in April I bought the Bang & Olufsen A9 sound system for my apartment. The A9 had looked so beautiful in the store but when it came time to take photos of it for my blog I just couldn’t make it look good which is why I ended up using stock photos from their website instead. I realized I couldn’t make it look good because my apartment looked horrible. Around the same time I was invited by the team at West Elm in Avenues to pass by and check out their store. I had only passed by the store from outside before and had gotten the impression it was an expensive brand so never really went in. But on that day I got shown around the place and I just fell in love with everything since their furniture had a very New York loft feel. Then I found out their prices were slightly more expensive than IKEA but less than THE One and it hit me, I needed a makeover. My apartment was looking outdated and I needed a fresh start anyway with my recent divorce and all so I asked them if they’d be interested in doing a makeover and they liked the idea. Last week I finally had everything done.

My apartment is a beautiful duplex located in one of my favorite places in Kuwait, the old Salmiya shopping street. The apartment has very nice space and a lot of potential but wasn’t getting any TLC. When I first moved in I was broke and couldn’t afford to furnish it properly and then later when I did have money I was spending it all on my apartment in Lebanon. Not only that but the walls had the most horrible colors that somehow seemed like a good idea years ago. The first thing I did when West Elm came over to check my place out was let them know what my issues were with the current setup and what I was expecting from the makeover. For example my living space had enough seating for around 5 people so when my friends were coming over I wouldn’t have enough space for everyone and the space I already had was very focused around the TV. I couldn’t have big lunches or dinners at my place either since my dinning room table fit only 4 people. I hated the lights in my apartment, I hated my kitchen which was an ugly purple and my living space was a bright magenta (it was a phase I went through so don’t judge me) which I honestly couldn’t stand anymore. I didn’t want a TV in my new space because I thought having a TV would be anti social plus I already had a TV room upstairs. I wanted the space to be very social and one that could hold a lot of people. Usually when people come over the groups are divided between the kitchen and the living space so I wanted people sitting in the living space to be facing the kitchen so they’re more connected. Finally I needed to have my iMac downstairs because I do most of my work on my iMac and I didn’t want to take any work with me upstairs. Based on those criteria’s we sat down and decided what we were going to do.

The first thing we decided on obviously was to change the color of the walls. They recommended I go with a dark grey which I was hesitant to at first but now I’m so glad I did. I also ended up ordering really beautiful Orla Kiely wallpaper to add a bit of color to the walls. I’ve loved Orla Kiely’s stem patterns for a very long time and figured it would give a slightly retro feel to the space which it did. I’ve also always loved baby blue walls and thought it would match perfectly with my KitchenAid Mixer so I had my kitchen painted a baby blue. I actually ended up repainting my whole apartment including my bedroom and my TV room since after I saw what a big difference it made to my space downstairs I wanted to change everything.

On my first visit to the West Elm store the first thing that caught my eye was an incredible bookcase/sculpture they had on display. I right away asked them about it and they told me it wasn’t for sale and that it was actually built by one of their talented employees out of wood recycled from their crates. It was love at first sight and I knew I had to have it. So after nagging them about it they finally told me I could take it. This was going to be the centerpiece to my living space. It was just insane looking, it wasn’t perfect, it had flaws and it was all over the place but that’s who I was and that’s why I needed this.

For the couch we decided to go with the Tillary 8-piece Sectional. It was comfortable, cozy and it would fit perfectly in my space while holding a lot of people. It came in a bunch of colors but I wanted grey which I thought was very bachelor pad’ish and worked well with the wallpaper and the black glossy floor. For the dinning room table we went with the Parker Dining Table. I liked it because it was minimal while still looking slightly retro like my wallpaper and it was also expandable so it could hold 6 people when closed and 8 when open. To give the table a funky touch we chose the John Vogel designed chairs and got matching barstool versions to use with my kitchen bar. Finally the accessories and lights, they had a ton to choose from and other than the lights I let them decide on the accessories for me and damn what a difference the accessories make. The rugs and the random accessories on my tables all around the apartment just give the place such a warm and cozy feel.

I can’t believe how my place looks so different after the makeover. I still need to buy my dinnerware and a few more accessories from them but the overall look is done. The difference is night and day and I now love spending time chilling on my couch listening to music while browsing on my iPad or hanging out with friends. Friends are also loving the fact that I don’t have a TV in the space since without it all the attention goes on socializing. To think all this started because of my Bang & Olufsen A9. I just wanted it to look good at home and I ended up getting a whole makeover done around it. Now my A9 looks like it was made for the space and the bookcase looks like it was built around it. If you’re interested in checking them out, West Elm is located in Avenues Phase III near Harvey Nichols and opposite Life with Cacao. Here is a link to their [Facebook Page]

Photos of the bookcase and accessories were taken by the super talented @tammyque


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