Photo Essay: Sole DXB Event in Dubai

DSC_0239edited_final

 

Today’s post is another University project that I just completed for this term’s photojournalism course. I present to you:

My Photo Essay on Sole DXB event that took place on the 14th and 15th of November. I was there on the 14th of November for a few hours, taking photos and meeting up with some friends.

First up, the short synopsis about the photo essay:

Many think that Dubai’s street culture doesn’t exist. The organisers of Dubai’s urban lifestyle and culture event want to change that misconception.

The city’s first – one of its kind event, Sole DXB was staged at Dubai Design District to showcase the region’s latest street culture trends. Specifically the footwear, fashion, basketball, hip hop, and street art.

Those who made their way to the venue were treated by regional retail brands; Nike, Puma, and Reebok. DJ’s, live performances and panel discussions pumped life into the event and gave it a fresh and exciting community atmosphere. With a hidden construction site chosen as a venue for this year’s Sole DXB event, indeed it is underground.

 

Ball Above All
Ball Above All

Professional basketball players take turns at shooting hoops at Sole DXB’s grounds in celebration of basketball culture. Dubbed ‘Ball Above All’, the competition saw the victor walk away with 10,000 AED. The game has proved to be a popular way to bring the community together. The only stipulation was that entrants must be 18 or older to apply to play in the tournament.

 

Funky Lines and Abstract Shapes
Funky Lines and Abstract Shapes

British artist, Remi Rough and his counterpart YesBee are busy creating the freestyled ‘Mondrian vs Wildstyle’ art piece. A 3 x 10 meter art work; spray painted using ‘Montana 94’ paint. Remi’s art began on walls and trains in South London in 1984. By his own admission, “I didn’t invent straight lines, I just made them funky!” – said Rough of his work.

 

Feline Nostalgic?
Feline Nostalgic?

Canadian pop artist, Antoine Tavaglione – also known as Tava is a muralist and illustrator based in Montreal. Famed for his signature ‘dripping milk’ paintings, his “Che Cazz” piece proved a popular addition to Sole DXB. The cat figure mural was created in one day, and produced using spray cans.

 

Melting Bart Art
Melting Bart Art

Additional work from Tava – showing more of his favourite cartoon figures – this time, Bart Simpson. Made using acrylic colours on canvas, Tava said: “I like to recreate iconic characters that are very nostalgic to me, and add my signature dripping effect to them as if they are melting ice cream.”

 

Futuristic Femme Fatales
Futuristic Femme Fatales

‘The Irezumi Girls’ are part of a limited edition created by Dubai-based design studio Robot and Spark. The figures are made using cast resin material with a chrome finish. The artist imagined these toys to live in the year 2075 in the city of London. ‘The Irezumi Girls’ are a gang of heavily tattooed, uber cool, superhero vixens hailing from Baker Street Station.

 

The Dangerous Duo: Lipstick and Suicide
The Dangerous Duo: Lipstick and Suicide

Creative Director Robert Gibbs from design studio Robot and Spark has been working on these original figurines since 2009. The germ of the idea came from a fiction-story about a group of futuristic, rebellious and superhero vixens – namely Lipstick and Suicide. The futuristic fantasy eventually came to life at Sole DXB’s gallery, after a five-year obsession.

 

Vintage-inspired Wheel Art
Vintage-inspired Wheel Art

British artist and photographer, Julian Castaldi expresses his love for Italian company ‘Campag’ with this painting of a vintage bicycle. His cobalt blue piece was inspired by his love for cycling, and the iconic company. Julian explains the concept by saying: “I have always loved the logo and story behind the brand.” The ‘Campagnolo’ painting uses acrylic, enamel, pastels, and lacquer on a 4 feet x 3 feet canvas.

 

Retro Biking
Retro Biking

Corcel, a Dubai-based bicycle and apparel store take cycling lovers back to the good old days with their 50’s/60’s inspired collection. The ‘Bikeid’ range was created for a nostalgic bicycle experience. The simple, elegant, and vintage designs can be customized for personal taste. A couple interested in getting a bike are looking at the catalogue and selecting their preferred colour of bike and tires.

 

Soulful Art
Soulful Art

An amateur artist is keeping himself busy by drawing a pair of sneakers using spray paint. Despite his aching fingers from the excessive amount of pressure while completing this piece of art, he is determined to leave his mark at Sole DXB. He asks the audience: “Does it look like a shoe?” and feels ecstatic after their approval.

 

Neon Galore
Neon Galore

The stylish crowd attending the urban lifestyle event did not overlook making a fashion statement with their favourite pair of sneakers. A young lady sporting a very bright and colourful pair of ‘Nike’ trainers caught my attention. She told me that they were a recent buy from the brand’s latest collection.

 

Drained Soles
Drained Soles

Another original pair of ‘Nike’ trainers worn by one of the ladies attending the street art event. When I asked her about the unique running shoes, she told me the story behind them and how they’ve been worn out at a music festival overseas. “I bought them from Barcelona – for a rave.” she said. I thought they still looked new and exotic!

 

Reliving the 90’s
Reliving the 90’s

A priceless moment in time, as I am transformed back to the 90’s at street wear label Amongst Few’s interactive gaming space. The highlight of the event for me was discovering this cool 90’s inspired concept brand. Founded in 2013, Amongst Few is a Dubai-based street wear brand that merges traditional Emirati outfit inspiration with Western style. In my nostalgic 90’s flashback, I can be seen playing the game ‘Duck Hunt’ on a 1983 Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) console – complete with classic TV sets and 90’s memorabilia.

 

On Cloud Nine
On Cloud Nine

A great variety of second-hand sneakers on display at the sneaker swap stall. Trendy and pristine trainers to match every age and style fill the wooden racks at this sneaker wonderland. Get lost in time as you look for the perfect pair to replace your worn out and tired sneakers. No cash? Don’t worry, you can trade in the currency of sneakers!

 

Bouncing Sick Beats
Bouncing Sick Beats

Dubai-based urban and R&B DJ, Mr. Shef Codes livens up the Reebok space with his top old-school R&B beats. Shefan Lantra, better known as Mr. Shef Codes is currently signed with Bliss Inc Entertainment and plays at local venues around the city. The tunes he was playing were so addictive, they kept the crowd glued to the Reebok stand far longer than they intended to be there.

 

Love for the Sole
Love for the Sole

Iraqi artist, designer, calligrapher, and typographer Wissam Shawkat creates a ‘calligraffiti’ piece of art in his signature modern Arabic calligraphy style. The art work includes the words (love, affection) written in calligraphy style. The Dubai-based artist has been in love with the classical writing style since he was 10 years old. He is using acrylic colours on canvas to create the aptly titled ‘Love for the Sole (Soul)’ piece.

 

Some additional images that were not part of my photo essay project:

 

PUMA x Sophia Chang sneakers
PUMA x Sophia Chang sneakers

I won these lovely designer PUMA sneakers in a competition that I entered with Stylist Arabia magazine. All I had to do was share a photo of my favourite pair of sneakers! This pair was part of a collection for autumn/winter 2014, in a collaboration between PUMA and East Coast creative Sophia Chang. The designer’s illustrations are inspired by New York, and specifically the Brooklyn area.

 

Here’s the finished wall that Remi Rough and Yesbee were painting:

 

Remi Rough art work
Remi Rough art work

 

here are other paintings from Julian Castaldi that were on display at the event’s gallery:

"7Up"
“7Up”

Materials used: acrylic, enamel, lacquer on canvas : 4feet diameter.

Concept: Just love the old school soda labels I actually collect vintage skateboards, soda bottles amongst other things.
"Skater Girl"
“Skater Girl”

Materials used: 100cm x 70cm in metal frame.

Concept: Shot in London and used in Urban Outfitters.

"Typo"
“Typo”

Materials used: 100cm x 70cm in metal frame.

Concept: Love the signage and billboards around LA lots of hand painted and distressed signage which looks amazing, this was shot around Melrose in LA.

 

"Voyeur"
“Voyeur”

Materials used: 100cm x 70cm in metal frame.

Concept: Used to drive past this private members club on Santa Monica Blvd, it had a mysterious look and I stopped one morning to shoot the pic.

 

"7Up Polaroids"
“7Up Polaroids”

Framed original Polaroids shot in LA 2005 on painted board.

 

"Pegasus"
“Pegasus”
Framed original Polaroids shot in 2012 on painted board
Julian explains:
“I have been shooting Polaroids for over 20 years and my Private Rooms project includes Polaroids I have taken of John Malkovich, David Bailey, Oasis, Pearl Jam and many more.”
For more information about Sole DXB or any of the artists mentioned in this post, check the links included in this post.
My personal pair of sneakers which I wore to Sole DXB!
My personal pair of sneakers which I wore to Sole DXB!

 

UD Profile Post: Savannah and her One-off Art Creations

Savannah - A Talented Young Artist
Savannah – A Talented Young Artist

 

Today’s post is all about showcasing a highly talented and incredibly sweet young French lady. Savannah is an abstract Artist and professional Actress. I was delighted to see some of her art work being displayed at The Life & Style Show exhibition that was held in ADNEC, Abu Dhabi earlier this month. I’ll be writing a post on the show soon…but in today’s post, I introduce to you this lovely young Artist through a short interview that I had done with her over a nice lunch at Sushi Art in DIFC.

Savannah paints on different types of material, but her most recent creations are her one of a kind artistic greeting cards. At the Life and Style Show, Savannah got to introduce her cards to the people of Abu Dhabi. She is based in Dubai though and can be contacted by e-mail and mobile (details below).

Interview with Savannah – the French Artist:

Full Name:       Savannah Frammery Passagne du Quercy
 
Savannah, as the youngest female CEO in the UAE, how old are you?     18
 
Apart from acting and painting, what are your hobbies?   I like to read poetry, plays, classics, and fiction. I also like photography, running, and eating sushi 🙂
 
 
Me and Savannah conversing over sushi :)
Me and Savannah conversing over sushi 🙂

 

How long have you been making your cards?   About a year and a half.

What type of art is it?  Abstract, modern art.
 
What materials do you use in your card creations?   My choice for the materials is usually spontaneous. Sometimes I would use a paint brush with loads of water dripping. Other works might involve the use of different materials such as a toothbrush, my hands, sponge, and other various materials.
 
The cards are vertically painted on a canvas at first, then the details are added horizontally.
 
 
Savannah's Artistic Creations
Savannah’s Artistic Creations

 

Where do you get your inspiration from?    People, stories, personal experiences, thoughts, my life. My paintings are not just random. All cards have meaning, soul, depth, and they represent a part of my life.
 
In a few words, how would you describe your artistic style?   It’s just me. Sometimes it can be described as feminine or colorful. And at other times it can be labelled as dark. My sense of style can be described as impulsive…it’s a blend of different styles. Since it all comes from the heart, my pieces are not planned.
 
How long does it take you to create one card?   From 10 minutes to one hour.
 
 
IMG_6004
 
 
Do you customize the cards for individuals?    The cards can be personalized for various occasions such as weddings, and anniversaries.
 
What is your aim behind creating and selling them?   I love giving people the pleasure of receiving a unique and original card that is affordable.  People need to see the card as a piece of art, rather than just a greeting card.
 
Who is your target market?   People who appreciate art and see the value in it. Art lovers basically…people who understand that with a card you can buy a gift.  As opposed to just attaching a card to your gift, the card becomes a gift in itself.
 
 
IMG_6005
 
 
 
How much do the cards cost?   For 20 pounds – 100 AED, they can own a unique card that no one else will have. Since each card is an original creation of art.  The prices for the cards range from 50 AED and above.
 
How can people contact you to purchase or order cards?
People can reach me by e-mail. A web site will be available shortly.
 
E-mail:   [email protected]
 
 

Savannah is a truly inspirational and creative soul with great talent and such a warm heart.  At her young age, I’m sure that she has a bright and successful future ahead of her. I wish her all the best in her creative career and education and I look forward to seeing more of her amazingly talented creations.

Leaving you with some images from the show and of Savannah, with more to come in future posts. But for now, don’t hesitate to drop this talented young lady an e-mail to inquire more about her art work and card creations.

 

IMG_6044

 

Savannah's Stand at The Life & Style Show
Savannah’s Stand at The Life & Style Show

 

IMG_6047

 

 

Savannah - A Beautiful and Talented Soul
Savannah – A Beautiful and Talented Soul

 

Savannah - Youngest CEO in UAE
Savannah – Youngest CEO in UAE

 

 

Savannah - a true inspiration
Savannah – a true inspiration