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The Droplet, the ambitious architecture project by Lola Karimova

The Droplet, The Ambitious Architecture Project by Lola Karimova

Philanthropist and former permanent representative of Uzbekistan to UNESCO Lola Karimova-Tillyaeva launched an ambitious art installation project, The Droplet, aimed at helping the environment. Lola Tillyaeva, who earned a bachelor’s and master’s degree in International Law in 2001 from Uzbekistan’s University of World Economy and Diplomacy, is a well-known philanthropist with a passion for both people and the environment.

Lola Karimova is married to Timur Tillyaev, a businessman in the transportation industry. Together, they have a presence in Paris, Los Angeles, and their charitable work spans many countries. Lola Karimova and Timur Tillyaev have two charitable organizations working with underprivileged children in their native Uzbekistan. The You Are Not Alone Foundation, founded in 2002, provides care to children that have been abandoned or orphaned. The Foundation’s gamut includes refurbishing care homes, providing education, skills training, medical care and much more.

A second charity, NCSAC, the National Center for the Social Adaptation of Children, helps provide life-enhancing opportunities for children with disabilities. Services offered include specialized, free education and speech therapy as well as various physiotherapy treatments to help the children grow into independent young adults. To this day, NCSAC has helped over 8,000 children. 

Lola Karimova-Tillyaeva’s name may sound familiar for other reasons, too. As well as being a tireless champion for the welfare of children, Lola is also an accomplished diplomat who served as Uzbekistan’s envoy to UNESCO for a decade. Alongside her children’s charities, Lola has also facilitated countless cultural programmes to promote her homeland’s rich cultural heritage. 


The Droplet – An Ambitious Art Installation Project

A few years ago, Ms. Karimova-Tillyaeva branched out on a new venture: The Harmonist, a unique maison de parfum inspired by the ancient Chinese philosophy of Feng Shui. With inner and outer harmony at the heart of all The Harmonist does, Lola wanted to give back to Mother Earth. True to her vision and creative personality, Ms. Karimova-Tillyaeva was inspired to do this through the medium of art, and so The Droplet was born.

The Droplet is a powerful multisensory installation that highlights the urgent issues of global warming, conservation and most notably, water scarcity. The installation is designed to raise the question of how we approach the issue of water resources, and how global warming will impact people’s lives in the future. Discussion and conversation is paramount, and often it’s engaging, interactive exhibitions like these that can get the ball rolling.

The Droplet itself is an elegant 12 meter high and 6 meter wide sculpture made of aluminium tubing and, as you may have guessed, it’s shaped like a water droplet. This simple yet impressive structure reminds us of the simple power of water, and how vital water is to all life on Earth. Once inside the structure, visitors are introduced to sounds, smells and even physical sensations that provide a moving multi-sensory experience that speaks volumes. Materials and presentations by experts in the field ensure that a visit to The Droplet will set you thinking and trigger productive discussions on all issues surrounding water conversation.

The pavilion was launched in Paris in September 2017, from where it went on tour. Venues are chosen for their specific water-related situations, and the exhibits and discussions in the installation are tailored to the challenges of each local region it visits. 

Lola Karimova-Tillyaeva instigated this striking project, but an international team of experts was involved in bringing it to life, including artist Marcos Lutyens, fabricator Scott Froschauer and the Institute for Art and Olfaction.


Lola Karimova’s Vision

While Lola Karimova can make a real difference to many lives by helping treat, support, house and educate children through her various charities, the one threat she cannot mitigate on her own is the climate those children will have to face in the not-so-distant future. This issue is something we need to tackle together.

Karimova-Tillyaeva believes the power of art is something that can have a huge impact, so she sees this as one way she can help, not only by raising awareness of urgent environmental issues but also by encouraging people to work towards finding a solution. Hopefully, by creating projects like The Droplet, the conversation can begin to speed up regarding safeguarding Planet Earth for future generations the world over, including the children Lola Karimova and Timur Tillyaev are helping back home in Uzbekistan.


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