Italian design lab to tap Saudi culture in global project

Marco Laterza, left, and Pasquale Montemurro during the event. Montemurro said the school is about mixing knowledge from different backgrounds. (Photo/Supplied)
Updated 09 November 2019

Italian design lab to tap Saudi culture in global project

  • One of the design week workshops run by the school involved the engraving of rubber stamps to create patterns combining Saudi and Italian cultures

RIYADH: The leaders of an experimental Italian design laboratory are aiming to tap into Saudi culture as part of an international creativity project.
Matera Open Design School has been participating in Saudi Design Week — part of the Riyadh Season of activities — with talks and workshops based around its 2019 cultural program.
Open Design School coordinator, Marco Laterza, told Arab News: “It is not a school in the literal sense, there are no teachers or students. We all learn, and we all teach. It is a living lab for interdisciplinary experimentation.
“Our goal is to share, so we are trying something experimental. We are testing (designs), making mistakes and trying to do it better. We are creating a model and want to share it with those that are interested.
“We aim to involve Saudi Arabia, and we have people from all over Europe, Brazil and South Africa. Mixing different backgrounds and cultures is what gives us strength,” added the architect from the town of Montescaglioso in Matera province, southern Italy.
Laterza was joined in Riyadh by Open Design School lab manager, Pasquale Montemurro, who said: “The school is all about mixing knowledge from different backgrounds, and we have people coming to us from all parts of Italy and Europe.
“So, for us it has been very interesting to present our model to another part of the world, and to see and learn from the reactions. It is a great opportunity to be here (in Riyadh) and to participate in the Saudi Design Week.”
One of the design week workshops run by the school involved the engraving of rubber stamps to create patterns combining Saudi and Italian cultures.


KSRelief launches prosthetics' center in Taiz

Updated 23 January 2020

KSRelief launches prosthetics' center in Taiz

TAIZ: The King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Center (KSRelief) on Wednesday launched an artificial limb center in Taiz, Yemen, providing high-quality prosthetics for up to 600 patients.

Abdulqawi Al-Mikhlafi, who is the deputy governor of Taiz, expressed his appreciation for the Kingdom’s generous support to Yemen across all sectors over the past few years, particularly in the areas of health, the environment and development.

Al-Mikhlafi said such efforts helped local authorities to deal with the many challenges they faced in providing comprehensive services to needy Yemenis.

He added that the Kingdom’s support reflected the deep historical and cultural ties between the people of Yemen and Saudi Arabia, and he praised the Kingdom for standing by the country and its government for more than 50 years.

Dr. Elan Abdul Haq, deputy governor of Taiz for health affairs, thanked KSRelief for its continued support for Taiz and Yemen, assistance he said had alleviated the suffering of millions of Yemenis during the ongoing conflict.

The head of the Artificial Limbs Center, Mansour Al-Wazei, announced that the center would begin receiving patients soon, providing vital aid to amputees for whom prosthetics meant regaining the ability to live full and productive lives.