ABOUT SABEEL 2020
Sabeel 2020 is a programme that set out to produce uniquely and innovatively designed drinking water fountains for the Expo 2020 Dubai site and its legacy.
On November 11, 2019 at Jameel Arts Centre, Expo 2020 announced two winners: UAE-based Architecture + Other Things [practice], and Alia Bin Omair and Faissal El-Malak [duo]. An honourable mention was awarded to Dubai- and London-based firm Tinkah. The winning designs will be mass-produced and installed across various locations throughout the Expo 2020 site, and will remain as part of the Expo 2020 legacy.
Drawing from the Expo 2020 theme of ‘Connecting Minds, Creating the Future’ and subthemes of Opportunity, Mobility and Sustainability, Sabeel 2020 was a chance to build new creative collaborations and concepts, and further served to provide major opportunities for the UAE creative sector.
Expo 2020 and Art Jameel thank all entrants of the Sabeel 2020 competition. Details about the winners’ announcement can be found here.
The Sabeel 2020 open call ran from July to September 2019.
A prize of AED 100,000 will be paid to each successful applicant selected as a winner.
Inspired by the notion of the sabeel, the programme set out to reimagine the traditional drinking fountain as an iconic design for the Expo 2020 public space, harmoniously integrating both art and design elements.
A sabeel is a community water fountain that provides relief to passersby and travellers, and that symbolises our collective responsibility and solidarity with people in our community and humanity as a whole.
Sabeel 2020 builds on the concept of shared humanity and solidarity, and seeks to celebrate water as our common good, while incorporating the Expo 2020 subthemes of Opportunity, Mobility and Sustainability.
Designers, architects, artists and creatives were invited to reinterpret the sabeel as an iconic feature of the Expo 2020 public realm. The winning design(s) should have the capacity to push one’s understanding of the sabeel in a contemporary, creative way, while maintaining the functionality of a fully operational drinking fountain.
The Sabeel 2020 competition invited practitioners who:
Design proposals were required to:
Further technical requirements and health and safety regulations are listed here.
The application form was to be completed online. Submissions had to include:
Expo 2020 will cover the production costs, whereby applicants were requested to aim to conceive designs that are commensurate to benchmarked standards for a drinking fountain in the UAE market without compromising the design aesthetic (excluding the internal unit, plinth, infrastructure connections and installation costs).
Learn more about Sabeel 2020 below:
About Expo 2020
Our once-in-a-lifetime celebration – the largest event ever staged in the Arab world – is set to welcome 192 participating countries and millions of visitors from across the globe. Here they will experience warm Emirati hospitality at its finest, as well as the UAE’s values of inclusion, tolerance and cooperation. Youth are at the heart of our World Expo. That’s why Expo 2020 aspires to create a meaningful legacy that will benefit generations to come, both locally and globally, spanning everything from innovations and architecture to friendships and business opportunities. Learn more.
About Art Jameel
Art Jameel supports artists and creative communities. Current initiatives include running heritage institutes and restoration programmes, plus a broad range of arts and educational initiatives for all ages. The organisation’s programmes foster the role of the arts in building open, connected communities; at a time of flux and dramatic societal shifts, this role is understood as more crucial than ever. Learn more.
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