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AUS students win The Christo and Jeanne-Claude Award
The Silk Road, a unique sculpture that won American University of Sharjah students Khalid Al Tamimi, Ghanem Younes and Mohammad Abu Al Huda, the fourth annual Christo and Jeanne-Claude Award last December, was unveiled at New York University Abu Dhabi (NYUAD) on April 4.
The students, all majoring in architecture, created the eight-meter-long contemporary piece of art depicting Islamic art and architecture as a tribute to the UAE tradesmen of days gone by.
The piece is made up of 64 wooden layers, which vary in shape and size so as to link three archways from traditional Islamic architecture. The sculpture begins at one end with a pointed arch that originated in Isfahan during the Safavid era. Then the structure transforms into a more curved arch, from the Mameluke dynasty in Cairo, before ending in a rounded doorway from the Andalusian period. The three archways are joined in a pathway, symbolising the Silk Road - the ancient trade route upon which all these empires were formed.
Held under the patronage of Sheikha Shamsa Bint Hamdan Al Nahyan, The Christo and Jeanne-Claude Award is presented by NYUAD in partnership with the Abu Dhabi Music & Arts Foundation (ADMAF). In addition to the USD 5,000 production grant, the students also received USD 10,000 to support their future careers.
The students worked under the mentorship of Marcus Farr, Assistant Professor in Architecture.
The Christo and Jeanne-Claude Award was launched in 2012, for full-time students in higher education in the UAE and those who have graduated in the past five years. It encourages the creation of large pieces of public art and inspires and encourage students and aspiring artists.
All of the winning entries were unveiled at NYU Abu Dhabi and have gone on to tour across the country.