Join the discussion with three panelists, Mariam Al Kindi, Director of Al Ghadeer UAE Crafts, Lubna Bagsair, Producer at Image Nation, and Amna Alnowais, Emirati Director, moderated by Hana Makki to discuss the future of traditional Emirati crafts and Al Ghadeer UAE Crafts’ role in the community.

Working together to create a better life, the craftswomen of Al Ghadeer share their stories, connection to, and love of traditional crafts in a short film screening shown ahead of the panel discussion.

About Mariam Al Kindi

Mariam Al Kindi is passionate about artisanal manufacturing and graduated with a Bachelor's of Science in Industrial Management from Purdue University, USA, where graduates are called "Makers". She is currently managing Al Ghadeer UAE Crafts, the UAE's most comprehensive entity that empowers women through the production and sales of handmade cultural products. Determined to make art and design more accessible to the public, she initiated the Young Collectors' Club which rotates artwork amongst its members in an affordable and convenient way. Her personal designs are made using the medium of glass. One of her first pieces was the Emirati Rosary made of glass beads fused with sands from the Emirates as part of her glassworks boutique Glassier. She aims to be a driving force behind the industrial advancement of the UAE, which contributes to the efforts towards job creation and the diversification of the economy.

About Lubna Bagsair

Lubna is a Sudanese film director, producer and writer based in Abu Dhabi. Born and raised in the UAE, Lubna has worked across both narrative and documentary productions and has experience in script development, scriptwriting and creative producing. Lubna is currently working as a documentary film producer for Image Nation Abu Dhabi, the Academy-Award winning media and entertainment company based in the Middle East. She has directed several narrative and documentary films and her work has screened at a number of film festivals around the world including Beirut International Film Festival and Arabian Sights in Washington DC. Lubna has a bachelor’s degree in journalism and a master’s degree in film and spent her first year of her working life as a crime reporter in Dubai.

About Amna Alnowais

Amna H. Alnowais is a filmmaker currently based in Abu Dhabi. Initially interested in Conflict Resolution, she received a Bachelors degree in Hebrew and Politics from SOAS (University of London) before gaining filmmaking experience through a variety of roles on both local and international productions. In 2015, she directed ‘Omnia’, a short documentary portraying one woman’s experience of female genital cutting. The film has collected 5 awards internationally and has been part of panel discussions at Chatham House and Columbia University. With the hope of raising awareness, the film was recently screened within several Provinces in Egypt. Concurrent with her work in film, Alnowais is collaborating with the Music and Sound Cultures research group at NYUAD and writing her first feature film.

About Hana Makki

Hana Makki has worked on every aspect of production since beginning her career in film, working in feature films and documentaries in the UAE, France, Germany and Yemen. Hana has directed two short films: The Journey, officially selected in festivals in the Netherlands, Sweden, Beirut, Madrid, Canada and Iceland, winning her the special jury award at the Abu Dhabi International Film Festival; and the short film Melody earning her the Audience Award at the Mumbai International Women’s festival. Hana is now Head of Documentary at Image Nation Abu Dhabi, one of the leading media and entertainment companies in the Middle East.

About Al Ghadeer UAE Crafts

Al Ghadeer UAE Crafts is the most comprehensive organization in the UAE to empower underprivileged women through sustainable crafts. In 2006, Her Highness Sheikha Shamsa bint Hamdan Al Nahyan, the Emirates Red Crescent President’s Assistant for Women’s Affairs, set out to provide women with training, designs, raw materials, and marketing services to create culturally inspired products to assist them in earning a dignified living and sustain traditional crafts. Boasting more than 200 craftswomen, from different nationalities and ages, Al Ghadeer UAE Crafts has multiple product lines such as corporate gifts, stationery, home accessories, and fashion.