Exploring the boundaries between artistic practice, material research, and the built environment, Jeddah-based Bricklab was founded by brothers Turki and Abdulrahman Gazzaz in 2015 to establish a socially conscious design studio with a growing portfolio of cultural projects.
Born and raised in Saudi Arabia, the brothers have used their diverse background in architecture, planning, and theory, as well as their deep knowledge of the kingdom, to develop a unique and diversified practice. With projects spanning installations, interiors, architecture, and furniture, Bricklab has curated the first summer edition of 21,39 Jeddah Arts titled, Public/Private; and exhibited works at the British Museum, among several other accolades over the past few years.
In 2018, the design studio participated in the first National Pavilion of Saudi Arabia the 16th International Architecture Exhibition of La Biennale Di Venezia, working alongside curators Jawaher Al-Sudairy and Sumayah Al-Solaiman to respond to the Biennale's overarching theme of Freespace with an exhibition entitled Spaces in Between. The showcase considered the urban and social implications of five decades of rapid, oil-fueled, car-oriented development in Saudi Arabia.
For their most recent project, Turki and Abdulrahman are currently designing the first independent playhouse in Saudi Arabia, winning the contract for Hayy: Cinema, an Art Jameel initiative, in 2019. The project is part of a larger development, the Hayy Jameel, which was designed by UAE-based practice waiwai design as the city’s first bespoke home for the arts and creativity.
The duo conducted extensive research with Saudi and regional film practitioners in the country to create a multifaceted design for Hayy: Cinema, which incorporates a community screening room, audiovisual library, archive viewing rooms and educational space, in addition to the 200-seater main screen.
With Hayy Jameel set to open at the end of 2021, it will be interesting to see the designers’ consideration of the history of regional cinema and their incorporation of elements designed to encourage the participation of the wider creative community with Hayy:Cinema.
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