The first Arabic Calligraphy skateboard ramp

Posted filed under Arab World, Shows, Sports.


The 2nd edition of Fakie opened in Dubai: A skateboard deck art exhibition featuring 30 UAE based artists creating artwork out of used, worn out and broken skateboards. In conjunction with the Fakie exhibition Tashkeel has teamed up with Bradley Kirr to create a unique skateboarding environment featuring some of the best professional skateboarders and local amateurs riding the world’s first Arabic Calligraphy skateboard ramp artfully adorned by the famous street artist Amartey Golding from Showcase Gallery.

Workshops: Following the opening of Fakie on the 19th January, Tashkeel has teamed up with Surf Dubai to conduct a series of Saturday workshops incorporating surfing, skateboarding, and targeting to the youth community. Besides learning how to skate the ramp and surf the waves they will learn various design skills by creating their own skateboard, graffiti painting, and editing their own skate videos.

Video: Skate Biladi at Tashkeel - The love for art and skateboarding has led to the creation of a unique skateable art sculpture at Tashkeel in Dubai.

The National from Dubai reports: “Tashkeel, the arts centre in Nad Al Sheba, has come up with a full month of skateboarding, surf and art activities to bring out the creativity of local and expatriate children.

The idea of blending physical and artistic activity has become popular in the US, and made its UAE debut last week.

Youngsters skate on Tashkeel’s ramp, the slopes of which are cleverly shaped to spell the centre’s name in Arabic when viewed from the side.

They are then encouraged to paint skateboard decks inside the gallery before being given surfing lessons on Sunset Beach, and returning to the Tashkeel centre for more skating.

Bradley Kirr, one of the organisers, said the goal was “to inspire the kids into a heightened state of creativity … and convert some of that energy into creating the visual arts such as painting, drawing, photography and these type of things”.

At the programme’s opening last weekend, 15 local and expatriate youngsters took part.

“They all stayed here until 10pm last weekend,” Mr Kirr said. “We had to stop them and send them home.”

Omar Al Abbar, 15, an Emirati, was glad to attend.

The Dubai resident started skating a few years ago after he took a Dh5 dare to go down a ramp on a skateboard. He has since reached a level where he is sponsored in skating and surfing by local companies.

“Once I started skating I started to get support and I got sponsored,” Omar said.”

Read on at The National.

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Tashkeel Hub: Skate Biladi – 2012

The problem…. Skateboarding is a physical art form where the interaction between the obstacle and the skater often produces something beautiful when combined. Unfortunately most of the skateparks built today do not echo the artistry that skaters produce. The goal… To create a skateable sculptural art form with an Arabic presence. To accomplish this goal Tashkeel and Fakie looked at the intrinsic structure of Arabic lettering and found distinct characteristics which they thought could be interpreted into a skate park.
Middle of the desert on an epic backyard ramp 150 skaters from every corner of the UAE shredded constantly for 7 straight hours. The scene that played out yesterday was one of the most intense experiences and will play for a long time on life’s highlight reel. Thank you skaters of the UAE for having so much fun.

Feb 17th: To conclude the month of skate/surf/art activities we will conduct the 2nd edition of Skate Biladi (skate my country) to be called Skate Biladi 2.0: A social media skateboard experiment. This event is an extension of the dream of 13 year old Omar Al Abbar to create an event that brings skateboarding culture to the youth of his native Dubai. With the 2nd edition we took the original event concept held at Mamzar Park (where judges evaluate a skaters performance) and basically transformed the traditional skate contest format and created a platform that incorporates technology and social media native to the youth (BBM, Facebook, etc) whereby the skaters and audience are all complicit in the event outcome. Everybody (hopefully) will take photos using their smartphone (blackberry, iphone, android), upload them to Facebook, tag the person skateboarding as well as Tashkeelhub, and accumulate “likes” based on those photos throughout the night. The accumulated “likes”, along with the photos, will be displayed in real time on screens surrounding the Tashkeel Art Ramp so skaters can see their ranking and adjust their performance and interaction with the photographers to increase their “likes.” The skaters with the most “likes” at the end of the night, as well as the photographers who get the most “likes” for their photos, will be awarded prizes.

Skate Biladi on Facebook

Also on this blog: Skateboarding in Burma & Afghanistan

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