Designed to encourage thought, knowledge and harmony, The Reading Bench won the inaugural edition of Design 100, a competition organized by Dubai Design District (d3) as part of their ‘Design for Good’ initiative.

The duo behind the award-winning design, Sakina Kara-Sabur and Alicia Spoljar of BySOZO Interiors sought inspiration from the Late Sheikh Zayed’s message of harmony to create a bench held together not by an elaborate mechanism, but by seven interlocking points demonstrating the unity of the seven Emirates.

Paying homage to the UAE’s maritime heritage as well as its progressive spirit, the bench that was unveiled at Downtown Editions - the fair's new section dedicated to limited-edition and bespoke design - derives its form from the profile of a Dhow’s sail and is also reflective of the iconic Jumeirah Emirates Towers in Dubai.

In partnership with the American Hardwood Export Council (AHEC), the winning design was produced in a limited series of 100 pieces. All proceeds will go to Dubai Cares, in support of Syrian refugees.

According to AHEC,  the 6.94 cubic meters of American tulipwood lumber that was utilized in the overall production would be replaced by natural growth in the American hardwood forest in barely 6.7 seconds. The total carbon emissions associated with the production – from the extraction of tulipwood logs, its transportation and milling to kiln drying - are offset by the carbon stored in the timber, making The Reading Bench a worthy representation of the UAE’s commitment to sustainable design.

For more information on how to order one of the 100 produced pieces and support Dubai Cares, click here.