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UAE artists learning to do without plastic

Creatives at a new UAE business center are playing their part in tackling climate change by encouraging the community to go green through a series of art and design projects.

The initiative is being championed inside Niche, the sleek new four-acre ICD Brookfield Place in downtown Dubai’s multi-use community space.

Niche, which aims to create a platform of exchange between tenants and the community on a variety of important topics through talks, wellness sessions, educational workshops, and engaging activations has launched its Breaking the Plastic Habit scheme to help Dubai residents find ways to reduce their use of plastic products.

“We launched the Breaking the Plastic Habit program to remove single-use plastic from ICD Brookfield Place, and encourage our community to use refillable bottles,” Malak Qaoud, arts and events manager at ICD Brookfield Place, told Arab News.

“Breaking the Plastic Habit is part of our long-term commitment to deliver a sustainable future at ICD Brookfield Place.”

For the campaign, the business center worked with two influential artists, Nourie Flayhan, a Lebanese-Dubai-based illustrator, and Christine Wilson of Peahead, a Dubai-based eco-friendly and upcycling artist.

Flayhan, a longtime advocate for sustainability and environmental protection and known for her quirky animations and illustrations, has worked on the branding for the campaign. She has previously produced work for the likes of Gucci, Adidas’ Run for the Oceans campaign, and Selfridges.

“My younger self, this project is for her. I remember taking part in the environment club after school and always making sure that I was doing my best when it came to taking care of the environment, and just being conscious and aware of everything that was happening around me.

“I remember picking fruit and vegetables whilst growing up and my grandfather, he always taught me to appreciate the land around us and have a deep connection with it,” Flayhan told Arab News.

In an effort to raise awareness on recycling in a visual way, Wilson created a large art installation using plastic bottles – some from ICD Brookfield Place. She is known for her upcycling and reinterpretation of a Spinneys bag, now sold in several shops in Dubai, and will be hosting upcycling workshops for tenants in Niche as part of the campaign.

She said: “Up to 40 percent of the plastic waste produced by the users of ICD Brookfield Place is single-use plastic bottles – one of the easiest swaps for eco-friendly alternatives.

“I wanted to bring this unnecessary plastic back into full view, and there are not many organizations brave enough to allow their waste to be put on full display the way ICD Brookfield Place did.

“I am proud to have been part of this project which carries a simple message of positivity: Yes, you can break the plastic habit,” Wilson added.

Source: Arab News

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