In partnership with the Royal Institute of British Architects Gulf Chapter (RIBA Gulf Chapter), Dubai’s first architecture festival seeks to explore regional architecture, urbanism and sustainable development.

Curated with Juan Roldan, Assistant Professor in the College of Architecture, Art & Design at the American University of Sharjah under the theme ‘Identity, Context and Placemaking in the Gulf’, the festival will celebrate the achievements of architecture companies in d3, Dubai and the wider GCC region.

Alongside a showcase of landmark regional architectural projects, the event will host a series of talks inviting designers, architects and the general public to participate in daily discourse on building a sustainable future.

Speaking about the new festival, Khadija Al Bastaki, Executive Director of d3, said: “Dubai has long been known as an architectural playground and the emirate’s limitless ambition has found expression in its ever-evolving skyline. As we carry on the process of rebuilding in the post-COVID-19 world, our relationship with the built and natural world has never been more important. While offering a platform for critical reflection on social, cultural and economic issues, the exhibition will also provide opportunities for new talent and bring the design community together to champion Dubai and the UAE as a hub for knowledge, creativity and innovation.”

A celebration of what has been achieved by architects in the region, the exhibition will feature the works of some of the most exciting architects working in the Gulf. “The past six months have shown us all how important the cities and buildings we build for ourselves are, and how we must come together and move forward,” says Andy Shaw, RIBA Gulf Chapter Chair. “Architects have the skills to craft beautiful spaces that can be sustainable and innovative as Gulf countries look forward to how the future could be.”

“High-quality work with a deeper understanding of the Gulf’s historical context has become part of the region's cultural and social tissue,” says Roldan. “The d3 Architecture Festival 2020 in association with RIBA Gulf Chapter will highlight the diversity and complexity of the new architectural landscape that has emerged in the region.”

The inaugural edition of the festival is set to run from 11 to 13 November 2020 on the sidelines of Dubai Design Week.