Awards are an annual recognition of up-and-coming talent
Two graduating students from VCUarts Qatar’s Graphic Design and Interior Design departments were the recipients of the Arab Engineering Bureau (AEB) Awards for Design Excellence, for 2022, while two junior students were honored with AEB’s award for Creative Achievement and Potential.
This year’s ceremony was held in person at the Qatar Foundation partner university, and was attended by AEB’s GCEO and Chief Architect Ibrahim Jaidah, VCUarts Qatar’s dean, Amir Berbić, select faculty and staff, and the award recipients and their families.
Jaidah presented the AEB Award for Design Excellence in Graphic Design to Ghada Salah M H Ali, and Noof Tariq A H Al-Naama was the recipient of the AEB Award for Design Excellence in Interior Design. The AEB Awards for Creative Achievement and Potential for junior students were presented to Fatima Abbas (Graphic Design) and Haya Abdulla A R Al-Mazroey (Interior Design).
Jaidah said: “I congratulate the winners of this 16th cycle of the AEB awards. From experience, I can share how important such occasions are, even for those who are not chosen as winners. The entire process of participating and competing inspires creativity and broadens one’s perspective; the experience by itself is an accomplishment. Even after all these years, as the GCEO of AEB, I feel the thrill and excitement each time our organization participates or is shortlisted in a competition.”
And, he had a word for the families of the winners: “I’d like to extend my warm wishes to the parents of these remarkable students. Parents and families play a crucial role in supporting young people achieve their potential. I say this because even today, my mother is my key supporter.”
Dean Berbić said: “Mr. Ibrahim Jaidah is recognized as a pioneer of a new architectural movement that combines the far-reaching influences of Islamic art with modern styles to create memorable structures that are shaping Qatar. A great example of this style is the 40,000 seat Al Thumama stadium that has become an iconic landmark all by itself. Today, it gives the VCUarts community great satisfaction to see the next generation of creatives from our university being recognized by such a renowned designer and pioneer as Mr. Jaidah.”
The Design Excellence awards were instituted in 2007 by Mr. Jaidah to encourage and assist outstanding graduating students from VCUarts Qatar’s graphic design and interior design departments, as they start their lives as designers, and contribute to the community’s art and design landscape.
“When I was told that I’d been chosen for the award, I felt my emotions well up,” Ghada Salah Ali said. “Despite the uncertainty of our times and the challenges that we face, to be able to achieve this wonderful award is something that I am grateful for.
“In my journey at VCUarts Qatar, I’ve experienced highs and lows as any student would. But I have always had the continuous support from my family, friends, and mentors at university who have pushed me to do my best and kept me going on the right track. Because of their encouragement, I could seize opportunities that placed my creative output in the public eye, such as exhibiting my work at the Cultural Fusion exhibition, as part of the Qatar-USA 2021 Year Of Culture. And of course, now, being a recipient of this incredible award!”
For Noof Al-Naama, who won the AEB award for Creative Achievement and Potential in her junior year, the announcement was unexpected.
“In all honesty, I hadn’t expected to win again at the senior level,” she said. “I was stunned when I heard my name being announced, and I couldn’t wait to inform my parents.”
Al-Naama added, “At VCUarts Qatar, I’ve continued to work on myself and develop my design style of building on the Qatari values and traditions, and proudly sharing them with the world. Everything from doing an internship at an interior design firm, through the hard work at the university, to the participation in extracurricular activities such as the Ajyal 2021 art exhibition, Katara’s “Sketch” exhibition and designing TotalEnergy’s tennis logo that will be used for the next three years – all these have molded me into the person I am today.
“I would like to thank Mr. Ibrahim Jaidah, his team, my professors, and my university in providing us, a young generation of aspiring designers with continuous motivation to be creative. To all youth I’d like to say: do what you love, and you will prosper.”
Besides the awards, AEB and Jaidah continue to partner with VCUarts Qatar through their participation at VCUarts Qatar’s biennial international art and design conference Tasmeem Doha, as well as by providing internship opportunities for VCUarts Qatar students.