Islamic Arts Festival Look Up, Look Out
Under the patronage of HH Sheikh Dr. Sultan Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member, Ruler of Sharjah, the Cultural Affairs Department at the Sharjah Department of Culture has organized the 21st edition of the Sharjah Islamic Arts Festival (SIAF).
The installation ‘Look Up, Look Out’, created by London-based design collective Toy Studio, located at the Al Majaz WaterFront, officially opened in the presence of Mohammed I. Al Qaseer, Director of the Department of Cultural Affairs, Farah Qassim Mohammed, Islamic Arts Festival Executive, the respected guests, the artists and the media.
‘Look Up, Look Out’ comprises of two installations. Two square spaces are boxed with arabesque and each reveals one type of a horizon in terms of religious connotations and references. Two horizons, the earthly and the celestial present two compelling views.
To ‘look up’, in contemplation, towards the celestial horizon, means to seek a divine presence. To ‘look out’ towards the earthly horizon symbolizes looking out of a box, with desire to transcend our way of thinking and behaving, to better ourselves.
Toy Studio is a London based collective who work across the fields of art, architecture and design. Founded in 2016 by Innes Shelley and Toby Plunkett, their working practice seeks to uncover insight that resonates and inspires through a process of immersion and collaboration. Through the use of digital tools, for analysis, formal generation and fabrication, they share an innate obsession to create, craft and champion ideas that share stories and new experiences. This is a second time Toy Studio is presenting their installation at the Sharjah Islamic Arts Festival. Last year we had a chance to see the installation ‘In Bloom’.