On Thursday, November 12th and Friday, November 13th, between 12 pm to 8 pm on both days, the Loro Piana boutique at the Dubai Mall played host to Wissam Shawkat – the respected and award-winning Dubai-based artist and designer.
Wissam has developed a unique and poetic form of Arabic script. He showcased the beauty, elegance and craftsmanship found in this deeply historical and Arab art form, through a live personalisation activation for Loro Piana clients by hand-painting onto the classic Extra Pocket L19 Pouch for women.
This exclusive event was part of on ongoing collaboration between Loro Piana and Wissam, and is part of the brand’s commitment to nurturing excellence in contemporary art and design and supporting the careers of local practitioners.
Wissam has worked with a diverse set of clients and institutions over the years. His work has been featured in galleries, museums and collections in New York, Berlin, London, Barcelona, Istanbul and Dubai. He has received numerous prizes for his calligraphy. He has also participated as both an artist and committee member and judge at multiple International and local design and calligraphy events.
Letters of Love, his 2011 solo exhibition at Reed Space in New York, introduced a global audience to a series of contemporary compositions. With Monumental 11/11, a 2015 exhibition at Tashkeel, he visually announced his break with traditional calligraphy and his commitment to instead use the letters as a foundation for works of dynamic abstraction. This was followed by four other solo exhibitions: Inside/Outside, Disciplined Insurgence, Evolution/Revolution & Pursuit of the Rhythm.
The body of work showcased during those exhibitions is referred to as the Calligraforms movement, which focuses on not only the precise forms of the letters, but also the abstract shapes generated by examining the geometric spaces inside and outside of their structures. “Beautiful letter forms have no limits. Our imaginations and skills are what set these limits” says artist Wissam Shawkat.
Fabio d’Angelantonio, Loro Piana’s CEO adds, “With Wissam Shawkat, we share a profound and mutual respect for culture and heritage. Through his immense skills and talent, this celebrated collaboration is a fitting homage to Loro Piana’s commitment to engage with our clients in an expression of artistic refinement and appreciation of tradition and timelessness.”
Wissam’s “canvas” at the Loro Piana boutique was the brand’s Extra Pocket L19 Pouch; a signature accessory that gracefully demonstrates the brand’s excellence and is the perfect complement to a refined ensemble in the city.
Lined in Nappa lambskin with zip fastening, and available in luxurious ostrich and calfskin with a wide assortment of colours, the artistic talents of Wissam Shawkat enhanced each pouch’s aesthetic with a distinctly personal and creative touch.
With this collaboration, Loro Piana also demonstrates its appreciation for the discerning qualities of its clients in the region and offers them a rare and exemplary opportunity to combine an ancient craft with modern luxury.