Arab Fashion Week: Key designers who will take to the stage

Updated 06 October 2019

Arab Fashion Week: Key designers who will take to the stage

DUBAI: The Dubai-based event is set to run from Oct. 9-14 at City Walk and features designers from across the world, including these creative talents. 

Hussein Bazaza

Lebanese designer Bazaza graduated from ESMOD Beirut before going on to launch his own line in 2012. The designer is known for his whimsical, fairy tale-like style that often has a dark edge.



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BAZAZA AW 19:20 AMAL | RTW |look 48

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Rami Kadi

Lebanese designer Rami Kadi is known for his unconventional take on high-end sartorial design and often works with unexpected materials like plexi-glass.

Sophia Nubes

The Italian brand, helmed by two creative heads, will show off its latest collection at Arab Fashion Week on Thursday.

Dhruv Kapoor

Indian designer Kapoor graduated from Istituto Marangoni, before joining Etro’s womenswear design team. He moved back to India in late 2013 and showed off his first capsule collection in 2014.

Nora Al-Shaikh

The Saudi designer launched her namesake label in 2012 after studying fashion at Riyadh’s Arts and Skills Institute. “I’m sharing my culture with a global audience while showing one aspect of what it means to be a Saudi in the 21st century,” she told the Arab Fashion Week website.



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Resort 2020 collection

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ASMARAÏA

Dubai-based label ASMARAÏA is all about interpreting traditional Eastern clothing to create modern variations — all while maintaining modesty.


‘It Must Be Heaven’: Elia Suleiman’s sardonic take on the world

Suleiman, who plays the lead role as himself, explores identity, nationality and belonging. (Supplied)
Updated 23 October 2019

‘It Must Be Heaven’: Elia Suleiman’s sardonic take on the world

MUMBAI: Elia Suleiman’s “It Must Be Heaven,” which was screened at the Mumbai Film Festival, is pure cinema. Like his earlier works, here too the Palestinian director uses wit, sarcasm and minimalism, this time to present a series of vignettes that are funny but also a powerful lambast of the world we live in. Suleiman, who plays the lead role as himself, explores identity, nationality and belonging.

He says people worldwide now live in fear amid global geopolitical tensions. Today, checkpoints are just about everywhere: In airports, shopping malls, cinemas, highways — the list is endless.

“It Must Be Heaven” was screened at the Mumbai Film Festival. (Supplied) 

Suleiman’s earlier features, such as “Chronicle of a Disappearance” and “Divine Intervention,” showed us everyday life in the occupied Palestinian territories. This time, it is Paris and New York. 

The first scene is hilarious, with a bishop trying to enter a church with his followers. The gatekeeper on the other side of the heavy wooden door is probably too intoxicated and refuses to let the priest in, leading to a comical situation. Suleiman’s life in Nazareth is filled with such incidents — snippets that have been strung together to tell us of tension in society. Neighbors turn out to be selfish, and only generous when they know they are being watched. 

The Palestinian director uses wit, sarcasm and minimalism, to present a series of vignettes that are funny but also a powerful lambast of the world we live in. (Supplied)

In Paris, the cafes along the grand boulevards, and the young women who pass by, are typical of France’s capital. But a cut to Bastille Day, with tanks rolling by in a show of strength, jolts us back to harsh reality. In New York, Suleiman’s cab driver is excited at driving a Palestinian. 

The film has an interesting way of storytelling. The scenes begin as observational shots, but the camera quickly changes positions to show Suleiman watching from the other side of the room or a street. The camera then returns to where it first stood, and this back-and-forth movement is delightfully engaging.

The framing is so perfect, and the colors so bright and beautiful, that each scene looks magical. And as the director looks on at all this with his usual deadpan expression, a sardonic twitch at the corner of his mouth, we know all this is but illusion. There is bitter truth ahead!