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23 February 2024

Abu Dhabi's Wahat Al Karama wins German Design Award


A memorial to the UAE’s heroes and a celebration of the nation’s unity, Abu Dhabi’s Wahat Al Karama (Oasis of Dignity) has been announced as one of the winners of the German Design Award, an annual competition organised by the German Design Council, to recognise exceptional architectural projects and products.

The Oasis received the award for its innovative architectural design, from a jury panel that includes experts in architecture, interior design and trademarks, who granted the award to the British artist, Idris Khan, for his inspiring design, innovative products and overall sustainable communication in architecture and manufacturing.

The award includes five categories: Conceptual Architecture, Interior Design, Retail Architecture and Urban Space.

The Oasis previously won the 2017 American Architecture Prize after being selected by a 36-person international jury.

The commemorative landscape and its associated memorial, Pavilion of Honour, amphitheater and visitor centre was designed by the British artist Idris Khan in collaboration with Brisbane-based architects bureau^proberts, Urban Arts Projects and engineers Robert Bird Group, while the scheme’s master planning and landscape design was carried out by the engineering giant AECOM.

Clad with more than 850 cast aluminum panels, sections of the tablets were sandblasted and stamped with poems composed by the UAE’s founding president, Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan; President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan; His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai; and His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces.

Wahat Al Karama’s Pavilion of Honour, which is positioned at the end of a memorial walk that follows a water feature, has internal walls clad with more than 2,800 plates cast from 10 tonnes of recycled aluminium that were sourced from UAE decommissioned military armoured vehicles.