logo icon

Tanween 2021: ‘Tis the season of arts and creativity workshops at Ithra

Featuring talks, masterclasses and exhibitions, the event takes place until November 13…

Now in its fourth year, Ithra’s flagship Tanween creativity season has launched under the theme “Tools: Crafting Creativity”.

Taking place until November 13, the creativity conference features high-profile speakers and a series of targeted workshops and masterclasses and is designed to celebrate, explore, and inspire the creative process.

This year’s theme delves into the creative process and how the cultural industry can contribute to the creative economy.

The specific focus is on exploring the innovative use of tools and identifying new opportunities presented by adopting and developing new toolsets.


Miznah Alzamil, head of Innovation and Creativity at Ithra, commented, “From the first stone hammer to modern-day technology, tools enable our creativity to shape our world.”

“From hand and head tools to digital and physical tools, and abstract and real toolsets, Tanween 2021 explores the role ‘Tools’ have in our creative process and industries and shaping our creativity for the future.”

A brilliant line-up of talent and key highlights

Ithra Tanween

This year’s headline speakers include former Adidas senior design director Chris Law, founding director of the Khatt Foundation Dr Huda Smitshuijzen AbiFarès, international contemporary artist and researcher Sougwen Chung, and Arthur Mamou-Mani, founder of the award-winning Mamou-Mani Architecture practice.

Ithra will also unveil the findings of one of the most comprehensive studies mapping the cultural and creative landscape of the Middle East and North Africa, including rare insights into the Saudi cultural pulse.

Creative tracks for enriching weekends

Over the next few weeks, Tanween will host various activities for final year students, graduates, and young professionals from creative industries to develop their practice.

Ithra Tanween

It includes a selection of workshops – from Design Plastic Product (where you transform, reuse and process plastic to create new products) to printing digital risographs and illustrating 3D laser scanning.

Here are some of the upcoming events for those who are interested.

Graphics and Communication – Analog First

When: November 5-6

The must-attend event of the year for visual communicators, designers, and graphic artists. It explores how the evolving role of design impacts both business and culture.

Architecture and Products – Designer and a Maker

When: November 12-13

This one’s for the architects and designers of tomorrow. This programme offers insights on the role of tools in sustainability, ideation and creativity in design and architecture, and Your Future in Design, a partnership with the Saudi X Design (SXD) initiative to provide a new platform of resources for emerging creatives.

Explore Tanween’s four significant pavilions

Ithra Tanween

That’s not all, though. Be sure to check out the exhibitions taking place at the four pavilions that focus on heritage, architectural ingenuity, culture, design and innovation.

In Sa’af by Shahad Alazzaz, the architect brings the Kingdom’s heritage to the forefront, weaving in the history of Saudi’s rural villages.

House of Hairs by Eidetic Space offers a journey through tradition and culture, evoking a timeless significance tied to Bedouin life and their deep sense of community.

Faseelah is a Tanween Challenge architectural pavilion showcasing smart construction methodology and technique.

Meanwhile, the final pavilion, Sketch, welcomes visitors into an exploratory environment analysing concepts of place and space through artists’ perspectives.

Visitors can also look forward to a series of meet-ups, social events and performances.

Tanween 2021, King Abdulaziz Centre for World Culture (Ithra), until November 13. Ithra.com

Images: Provided