Local artist seeks comfort in helping others

An art print of Alaa Khalil’s Petra design. (Photo: Handout from Alaa Khalil)
An art print of Alaa Khalil’s Petra design. (Photo: Handout from Alaa Khalil)
AMMAN — Alaa Khalil, the founder of Ala.k Design House, found a way to help others using his creative designs during the COVID-19 pandemic. اضافة اعلان

In an effort to ease the burden of unemployment and help Jordanians during the pandemic, the artist launched Ala.K Design House. Through this venture, he prints meaningful designs on various items and house goods and donates 50% of the profits to NAUA, a charity organization founded by the Crown Prince Hussein Bin Abdullah II.

“I work with the National Aid Fund, so when the pandemic began in March, I noticed that many Jordanians work without security on a day-to-day basis,” Khalil said in an interview with Jordan News. “Seeing how some of them didn’t have any backup, I felt responsible for them.”

Khalil’s “Red Sea Getaway” design. (Photo: Handout from Alaa Khalil)

The artist took the first step towards his goal of helping others by launching a collection of meaningful designs printed on mugs, tote bags, and postcards that are emblazoned with his colorful designs.

 “My favorite print is the ‘Hungry’ one, because as I always say, when we are hungry, we eat anything. But what about people who can’t find that anything to eat?” he said, stressing the importance of drawing attention to others’ needs and struggles.

Khalil’s designs from his first collection were sold on his website and exhibited at Readers’ Bookshop in Amman.

“I was able to help around fifty families with the sales of my designs,” he said.  “I was really happy I was able to be part of helping these families.”

In addition to supporting vulnerable workers affected by COVID-19, Khalil helps the local tourism sector. Since the onset of the pandemic, Jordan’s tourism sector has been devastated by airport closures and a decline in travel. Showing his support, Khalil launched a tourist site collection.

Khalil’s “Between the Wadies of Jordan.” (Photo: Handout from Alaa Khalil)

“During the pandemic, we weren’t able to travel or welcome tourists in Jordan, so I wanted to remind people how beautiful this country is by printing its sites on various item,” he said. His prints feature famous Jordanian locales such as Petra and the Red Sea.

In addition to prints, Khalil also designed handmade crafts, such as a handsewn Christmas collection.

“I enjoyed every moment as I created that collection,” he said.

Although the pandemic has eased, Khalil’s willingness to help hasn’t. He is currently planning to launch a new collection that raises awareness about the importance of a clean country.

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