Al-Irsyad Mosque / Urbane

© Emilio Photoimagination

Architects: PT. Urbane Indonesia
Location: Kota Baru Parahyangan, Padalarang, Jawa Barat,
Principal Architect: M. Ridwan Kamil
Project Team: Fahry Adhitya
Client: PT. Belaputera Intiland
Site Area: 8,000 sqm
Project Area: 970 sqm
Project Year: 2010
Photographs: Emilio Photoimagination

A mosque is a place of worship for Muslims—a place to kneel, stoop one’s head and pray solemnly. Oftentimes, it is also used to carry out various other religious activities.

The first thing that might catch one’s attention about this mosque in Kota Baru Parahyangan (KBP) is the absence of a dome, which is almost always a quintessential characteristic of mosques. However, the architects have informed that the dome is not a cultural/religious identity, hence not a necessity when it comes to designing an Islamic place of worship.

floor plan
elevation 01

The architecture of the KBP mosque is unique in that it uses stacked stones as the main façade to create tectonic effect, while embedding Islamic text/calligraphy on the façade as a graphic element and reminder prayer.

© Emilio Photoimagination

The primary shape of the mosque takes the form of a square, which seems the most efficient since Muslims pray in straight rows facing a specific direction or the Qiblah.The structural columns are arranged in such way that the façade seems like it is not supported by any frame. This shape also alludes to Ka’bah, the most important structure in the Islamic world, to which all Muslims’ prayers are directed.

© Emilio Photoimagination

The tall pole-like structure next to the square building form is called the minaret, an important element for mosque. It was used in the past for someone to call out to all Muslims to prayer on top of the minaret whenever prayer time has come. Today, the minaret still serves the same function, except loudspeakers a– used instead. In a way, the minaret has become an icon of mosques; anyone searching for a mosque can one from afar.

© Emilio Photoimagination

With a capacity to accommodate approximately 1,000 people, the mosque is also designed to ‘blend in’ with nature. The stacked stones allow for natural ventilation without the need for air-conditioning. Surrounded by water, the ambient temperature around the mosque will be lower during the hot season. Once inside, the people are able to look out and appreciate the external scenery.

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* Location to be used only as a reference. It could indicate city/country but not exact address.
Cite: "Al-Irsyad Mosque / Urbane" 10 Nov 2010. ArchDaily. Accessed 26 May 2015. <>
  • alex

    looks good, but i find the sphere across the water a little creepy, like an eye is watching

    • agus

      subhanallah …………………. semoga saya di beri kemampuan seperti beliau ini…

  • emre

    a very peaceful space have been achieved it seems,congrats..however i agree that the sphere is somehow out of the place, in addition it can be problematic theologically. prostating in front of a an object may not be acceptable. Concretization of Allah is a touching subject…Islam is strict about this.

    • razali

      i would agree with emre.. i think it would be much better without the sphere with the letter “Allah”. can’t be too literal on that… please mr.architect..

  • Didier

    I agree with the sphere comment. Looks strangely like an idol to me

    • luckhely

      agree.., probably the sphere should be put in somewhere (not in the front of the praying people or in the back) the beautiful nature scenery is enough to show God existance
      very imaginative n touching my feel TT, Two Thumbs up!! b^^d

  • A

    thumbs up really inspiring .