In this new project in Dubai, UAE, Artelier commissioned a complete art collection for the public areas across Dorchester Collection's One at Palm Jumeirah. Step inside for a tour of the bespoke pieces, where the artists were inspired by art historical references and the context of Dubai.
To meet the clientele's discerning eye, the art collection drew on art history. In the outside areas, monumental sculptures inspired by Henry Moore bring organic curves to the garden design, as if emerging from the pools of shallow water.
In the style of Moore and other modernist sculptors, expanses of marble are pierced to play with negative space. Here, the sculptures have been curated to reveal viewpoints of the lush green foliage, and the skyline beyond the courtyard, depending on the viewer's vantage point.
The sculptures were presented on bespoke stone plinths, that seamlessly blend the marble surface of the sculpture, with the stone and water pool.
Inside the main lobby space, a striking blue carved wood sculpture provides a focal point. The Japanese interior designer created an interior courtyard reminiscent of a Zen-garden. The wood artwork picks up on the artistry of this ancient practice, referencing raked lines in the sand.
The artwork was purposefully unframed, in order to highlight the deep grooves of the carved wood as they spill over onto the walls.
Sculptures inspired by art historical movements are also present indoors. A pair of bronze sculptures have a figurative element, reminiscent of Modernist sculpture and Cubist geometry. Their figures are purposefully silhouetted against the wide windows, highlighting their form – as if a shadow has been "cut" into the view.
The combination of hard, industrial metal and the form of the figure represent the theme of "man in the urban environment" – a key theme, likewise, for early 20th century Modernist artists, looking to understand the place of humans in futuristic, built spaces.
As one approaches, the highly textured bronze surface adds another layer of visual interest. The mark-making present in the bronze's surface gives the sculptures a distinctly human touch.
Another key artwork is a sculpted felt wall artwork. Created from an inky, midnight blue felt and accented with metal thread, the densely textured artwork contrasts with nearby sleek surfaces. The felt takes on a sculptural quality, that brings the piece to life as people move down the hallway.
This artwork was inspired by a "palm" – a playful reinterpretation of the iconic motif that forms the man-made landscape of Palm Jumeirah. This softer, more tactile abstraction of the palm leaf captures the qualities of the organic material, and references the palms just beyond the lobby window.
Other hallway spaces likewise explore the natural aspects of Dubai's context. A series of bespoke prints capture the idea of a city meeting the desert, referencing local topography.
Clean, minimalist lines are enhanced in the spa. Paintings are inspired by a minimalist exploration of colour amidst expanses of white; meanwhile a striking artwork in a hallway is crafted from woven metal wires.
Innovative materials are a key aspect of the artworks in the project. This diptych, painted on aluminium, creates a highly textured, impasto-like surface. Although abstract, it resembles the endless windows of skyscrapers, as if reflected in Dubai's azure waters.
The architecture of One at Palm places the context of Dubai front and centre, encouraging people to view the vistas of the city. To enhance this experience, sculptures have been curated outdoors – punctuating the sweeping skyline.
A marble sculpture creates a wave like form, that reveals the city beyond in its negative space. The artwork has an undeniable fluidity, referencing both the verticality of Dubai, and the constant movement of water below.
The colours of the sunset interact with the marble surface, enhancing the sculpture through subtle reflections of tonal pinks and purples, and the interplay between soft evening light and shadow.
As a complete collection, created entirely to commission in collaboration with leading artists, the artworks tell a narrative that connects to Dubai's context whilst having a timeless quality.
Photography all by Tooze Studio © 2022.