‘Tasmeem Doha 2017’ explores interplay of traditional & digital
19 Mar 2017 - 12:16
By Fazeena Saleem | The Peninsula
Local and international designers, artists, academics and industry professionals gathered at Tasmeem Doha 2017 to explore and discuss about a contemporary topic on art and design.
Virginia Commonwealth University in Qatar (VCUQatar), in collaboration with its home campus, VCU School of the Arts (VCUarts) hosted their biennial international art and design conference Tasmeem Doha 2017, under the theme ‘Analogue Living in a Digital World.’
It featured a slew of workshops, exhibitions, demonstrations, artists, and cultural leaders exploring the collision, intersection and interplay between the traditional and digital worlds.
“Tasmeem Doha 2017 is successful and the wide spectrum of speakers and presenters were a clear indication of it. The kind of discussions took place were very relevant and was beneficial to all of us,” Dr Akel I Kahera, Dean, VCUQatar told The Peninsula.
Since its launch in 2004, Tasmeem Doha conference has been developed to provide Qatar and the region an informed platform for exploring relevance and potential of creative practices of art and design, as well as to provide cultural, social, and economic benefit.
Tasmeem is the Arabic word for ‘Design.’ Tasmeem addresses contemporary topics on art and design and brings together international designers, artists, academics, students and industry professionals. Over the years Tasmeem have gained widespread attention and praise, while fostering partnerships that enhance the educational, creative and cultural vitality of Qatar and beyond.
During Tasmeem, students take part in workshops to analyse the firsthand value of intensive collaboration and creative output.
Over the years, the ambitious themes of Tasmeem have gained the university widespread attention, while fostering sustainable university-community partnerships that enhance the educational, economic and cultural vitality of Qatar.
Tasmeem Doha 2017: Analogue Living in a Digital World aimed to dialogue with art and leading thinkers, educators and practitioners whose ideas transcend media and speak to human existence in a technological society.
The intent of this conference was to explore the intersection between the analogue and digital within the context of our lived experience, and to examine where the two modes differ, intertwine, and coexist. By looking at past and present art and design methodologies and practices, Tasmeem Doha 2017, attempt to create a context for examining the relevance of our current attitudes to discover new ways to grow and evolve.
It attracted prominent speakers and artists from all over the world.
“The impact of Tasmeem in the region has become prominent. It has become an event that is attracting not only to students but also professionals coming to learn something new. They know the conference is trying to teach and expose a relevant topic. We are contributing to this design community beyond Doha. The great thing about Tasmeem is that its always different, two years a ago it was workshop based and aimed at students, but we had less people from outside, this year it’s different with diverse activities and has attracted many form the industry and outside Qatar,” said Tasmeem 2017 Chairs and Assistant Professors Michael Perrone and Marco Bruno of VCUQatar and Assistant Professor John D Freyer from VCUarts.
“This year we saw many during the conference whom we haven’t seen before, that shows that our message is getting out and reaching people beyond the domain. There were students, and faculty and industry experts from Qatar as well as from the region,” they said.
Besides the workshops and lectures, there were also interactive sessions which attracted the visitors. One such prominent activity was aimed at composing the largest ever pixel art by hand.
“We are trying to make the largest image ever produced. It will be two meter by 2.6 meter and it will add 307000 nails, every small portion made will be placed on to a big aboard so when you put all together, you will get the final image,” said Bruno.
Basically they have break a very big image into minimum units, so every single nail becomes a pixel. There are only six basic colours of these nails. There were 256 boards to be filled with nails and every small board will be fixed on a big board to get the hidden image.
Bruno says that making the pixel art by hand is relevant to the Tasmeem Doha 2017 theme, ‘Analog living in a digital world,’ as although the 19th century painters used such techniques , now days only a computer can fix, such broken parts of colours into an image.