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On Thursday, January 31st, the Italian Embassy in Beirut participated in the conference “Fabrica goes Lebanese”, which was held at ALBA.

FABRICA, the Italian Brand Benetton’s communication research centre, and its international designers have been invited by the Carwan Gallery and ALBA (Académie Libanaise des Beaux-Arts) in Beirut to create a series of new, limited-edition objects in partnership with local artisans in the Middle East. With a concept that seeks to expand the vocabulary of traditional crafts, this collaboration is part of Carwan’s project ”Contemporary Perspectives in Middle Eastern Craft”, exploring new avenues in design. On Monday, January 28, a one week workshop started, during which the design team of Fabrica under the art direction of its creative director Sam Baron, Carwan and 10 students from ALBA had a look to many typical Lebanese craftsmanship techniques and products. The aim is to find the direction that needs to be taken to design a good collection that will reflect the designers’ trip through Lebanon‘s handicraft tradition.

The Conference held last Thursday launched officially the project.


Fabrica is Benetton’s communication research centre. Set up in 1994, it is based in Treviso, Italy in a complex restored and enlarged by Tadao Ando. Fabrica is not a school, advertising agency or university. It is an applied creativity laboratory, a talent incubator, in which young, modern artists come from all over the world to develop innovative projects and explore new directions in communication, from design, music and film to photography, publishing and the Internet. These artist-experimenters are accompanied along their research path by leading figures in art and communication, blurring the boundaries of culture and language and transgressing the traditional borders between diverse ranges of communication mediums.


Founded by the architects Pascale Wakim and Nicolas Bellavance-Lecompte in 2010, Carwan began as the first pop-up gallery in the Middle East. Established in Beirut, the gallery exhibits limited-edition pieces in art and design events throughout the world, with a focus on internationalizing design in the Middle East. In exhibitions as well as in its primary Beirut space, Carwan features the work of international cutting-edge designers of unique contemporary objects such as limited-edition furniture, lighting, and objets d’art.