How can bees inspire good design?

Watch the video by Sylvia Smith to see how designer Ahmad Angawi is creating stunning work based on a beehive – and ancient Islamic tradition.

The beehive outside his Jeddah studio was the original inspiration for designer Ahmad Angawi. “[The bees] were next to my window, so every day I could see them building and building,” he says. “It was this very organic shape but based on a strong structure.”

The hexagonal-shaped cells of the hive called to his mind traditional decorative screens found in old Islamic homes “I call them the forgotten screens of Mecca,” says the designer. “I wanted to revive this craft.”

At his Jeddah studio – and also his London workshop – Angawi and his team use traditional methods to create the intricate pieces, which have been displayed at art fairs in Jeddah and Paris. And when the British Museum in London was creating a new Islamic gallery, curators asked Angawi to create five unique windows for the space – with stunning results. Watch the video above to find out more.

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