Dubai's Museum of the Future, the "most beautiful building in the world," hosted a starry evening as it rolled out the red carpet for the inaugural TIME100 Gala and Impact Awards on Monday.
The event, recognising extraordinary individuals who use their influence to build a better future, was the first major event at Dubai's Museum of the Future since its opening ceremony on February 22, 2022.
The honorees of the TIME100 Gala and Impact Awards, which is sponsored by the World Government Summit, included Sarah Al Amiri, UAE Minister of State for Advanced Technology; Ghanaian-British architect David Adjaye, founder, Adjaye Associates; Tony Elumelu, philanthropist and founder, The Tony Elumelu Foundation; Ellie Goulding, singer-songwriter and activist; Huda Kattan, Iraqi-American makeup artist, beauty blogger, and entrepreneur, Huda Beauty; Deepika Padukone, Indian actor, producer and philanthropist; and will.i.am, musician and entrepreneur.
Talking about how she felt after hearing news of being presented with the prestigious award, Bollywood actress and philanthropist Deepika Padukone said, "I received an email about this award a month ago, and it came to me on a day when I was feeling low and hopeless. And then I thought my life is not all that bad. I go about my life and day as authentically as possible, as mindfully as possible. I wake up with a sense of purpose every morning, and some days will be good; some may not be great. But that's what the journey is."
Accompanied by her husband Ranveer Singh, the beautiful actress added, "Sometimes you question your purpose. But when you are recognised by TIME you feel you are on the right path."
Shedding light on her inspiration in the past year, Padukone said, "I think the world is going through a lot and has been through a lot. If each one of us lives authentically and lives our truths, I think the world will become a much nicer place than what it is. I think everyone who has seen difficult days, whether it's the pandemic or the war that you've seen or beyond, everyone is fighting their own battle, going through their struggles around the world, but to see the resilience in people is what has inspired me the most."
TIME described the producer and actress as, "Deepika wants to live as authentically as possible." Her battle with depression has been instrumental in her endeavour to be an advocate of mental health.
Her dedication to mental health issues has made her stand out. "It doesn't come from a place of intentionally wanting to be; it comes from a place of recognising that okay, I worked hard, I've got into this place or position, which is partly given to me but partly that I've worked hard for. For the last few years of my life, I have been waking up in the morning and wondering what is the meaning of my life and how can I give back to this world everything that I've got and do everything with mindfulness – whether it's mental health or the kind of work I chose to do. The beauty is to acknowledge your mistakes and learn from them. That's where I am in my life," said the 36-year old actress.
Another awardee, a celebrated musician and entrepreneur, gracing the red carpet will.i.am, said, "We need to rethink the contributors and designers of tomorrow. We have to find out the champions and celebrate them more early. As inner-city kids, we need to compete. No one ever thought that Lewis Hamilton, an African descendant from the UK, could be one of the best F1 drivers in the world. No one ever thought that people like Tiger Woods would be one of the best golfers in the world. You need to apply that same mentality to data scientists, algorithm writers, engineers, roboticists... building autonomy."
The evening witnessed not just fashionable soirees but saw the presence of iconic sports personalities who elevated the spirit and expressed solidarity at the starry gathering.
British Boxer Amir Khan said, "Dubai is so multi-cultural, and here I see people from all over the world who live so peacefully here. It's amazing. As for the event, it's one of the biggest events that I've been to here in Dubai. The venue is amazing. When I said to my girl that daddy is going to the Museum, she was so jealous and said 'I want to go with you'. But she is a bit too young. But I will bring her someday."
Another VIP attendee, Turkish-German actress and model Meryem Sarah Uzerli, said, "The architecture of this place is amazing. I love the elevators here. I said they looked like transparent pills. Since this is the first event of this nature, I wanted to be a part of it. We are also taking part in this place to create a better future, inspiring people about their vision. This is very inspiring, and I am so glad to be here."
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