LocationBasuna, al-Maraghah- Sohag, Egypt
Lead ArchitectsWaleed Arafa
Mosque: The Latest Architecture and News
While French firefighters were putting out the destructive blaze at the Notre Dame Cathedral, another holistic site was also up in flames. Jerusalem's Al-Aqsa Mosque, which is among the holiest sites in Islam and was built almost 1,300 years ago, was struck by blaze while the monumental Catholic Church was also devastated with fire.
The fire is said to have started in the Al-Marwani Prayer Hall - also known as Solomon's Stables - part of the same compound as Al-Aqsa mosque and the Dome of the Rock. Fortunately, firemen of the Islamic Waqf department of the city were able to control the fire before any harm was done to the individuals or the other prayer halls. While the cause remains unknown, sources claim that the fire could have been ignited accidentally by children who were near the prayer hall at the time.
Mumbai-based NUDES architecture office have revealed a new design called "Mosque of Light" as their entry in the Dubai Creek Harbor competition. The project was designed as a play in light with a multi-layered geometrical form to filter daylight softly into the prayer hall. The mosque explores the combination of light and built form around a spiritual experience.
The architecture of the future mosque was the subject of a special seminar organized by the “Abdullatif Al Fozan Award for Mosque Architecture” (AFAMA) and the “Library of Alexandria” last Wednesday, July 25th, 2018 in Alexandria, Egypt.
In addition to announcing the ongoing mosque nomination process for the AFAMA that will end in September 2018, the general secretariat presented the objectives of the award, and the three principal scientific projects of AFAMA: “the “Mosqupedia,” “AFAMA portal and database,” and “the award.” The seminar tackled different architectural issues about mosques of the future, from the architectural concept to architectural styles and typologies, and architectural decorations to techniques.
The Architectural Awards are very important for the architectural industry, and for innovative architectural design in general, and as an organization responsible for global architectural awarding, "Abdullatif Al Fozan Award for Mosque Architecture" believes that this award will lead to unexpected change in the architectural design of mosques and will end the developed conceptuality of mosques. However, because it is relatively new, both intellectuals and practitioners are still uncertain about the aims of this award either because of being targeting mosques or because of the process of reviewing those nominated designs. So, "Abdullatif Al Fozan Award for Mosque Architecture – AFAMA" is currently working on decreasing the percentage of this "uncertainty" by clearly defining aims and requirements of this award, and this is what AFAMA is planning to achieve within the upcoming 3rd cycle (2017-2020).
Constructing places of worship has always been an intricate practice, managing to detach the human, and release the boundary between body, mind, and spirit. Holy presence has been crucial in designing and constructing sacred places, which is why almost all religious building possessed similar characteristics: grandiosity, monolithic material, natural elements, and a plan that compliments an individual’s circulation through the space. Contemporary religious structures, however, found a way to adapt to the evolution of architecture. Unlike the Gothic or Baroque periods, modern-day architecture does not have a dominant identity. It is, in fact, a combination of postmodernism, futurism, minimalism, and everything in between. Architects have found a way to transform these exclusive, religion-devoted places into structures of spirituality, manifestation, and fascination.
Here is a selection of contemporary religious buildings that prove once again that architects are breaking all boundaries of creativity.
Emre Arolat Architecture has unveiled their design for the Nora Mosque and Community Center in Ajman in the United Arab Emirates. The 10,000 square meter site located just north of Dubai, is located near a massive high rise residence block. However, it creates its own unique ambiance and spatial setting with a composition of shell-like platforms that spring from the earth.
The Dubai-based firm, X-Architects, have found inspiration in the cultural and architectural heritage of Islam for their new design. The Revelation Mosque, a +2500 square meter project, aims to create a new "heart of the neighborhood" in Abu Dhabi, UAE. In creating a generous urban void among a towering context, the proposal offers an immersive escape from everyday life, where the public (regardless of religion) can gather, communicate, and interact with one another.
AL_A has won a competition to design a new mosque within the Foster + Partner-designed World Trade Center complex in Abu Dhabi. The 2000-square-meter project, envisioned as a "pathway to serenity" rather than a single building, leads visitors on a journey through an informal park of palm trees that slowly align with the mosque's shifted grid as users approach the Prayer Hall. Once inside, visitors are facing towards Mecca.
"The mosque is envisaged as a piece of the city, one that reflects the journey from the temporal to the spiritual," said AL_A director Ho-Yin Ng. "The mosque and the garden become one, with the trees and the columns forming an informal vertical landscape and allowing Friday prayers to spill outside."
The Makkah Museum will be located seven kilometers from the Grand Holy Mosque, which is visited by millions of Muslims each year. The museum "will offer a unique interpretation and reflection of faith to the millions of Muslims who visit Makkah from around the world and who, up until this point, have had no cultural institution of this kind to enhance their visit to the holiest of Muslim cities," write the architects.
Images have been released of a new mosque planned for Copenhagen. Designed by Henning Larsen Architects, the mosque will replace an existing one on the corner of Dortheavej and Tomsgårdsvej in the Nordvest district of the city. ”One of Copenhagen's slightly forgotten districts will receive a new architectonic pearl,” says Morten Kabell, the city's deputy mayor for technical and environmental issues. The Copenhagen Municipality has approved the project’s planning application and completion is expected for February 2016.
The competition isn't over yet as the jury for the Central Mosque of Pristina Competition has announced two second place prizes and no winner. Organized by the Islamic Community of Kosovo, the competition seeks to create a place "where understanding, humanity, tolerance, respect and sincere love shall be cultivated." Slovenian firm SADAR+VUGA was one of the two teams awarded second prize with their project 21PR22. Follow us after the break to learn more.
Another noteworthy proposal for the Central Mosque of Pristina in Kosovo; this time, from Zurich-based architecture firm, Dürig AG. They envision the new mosque as an interplay between the individual and the community. "Mosques are places of worship for the Islamic community where the single believer joins a larger body for the ceremonial act of worship and prayer." Singular elements combine to make a larger, more meaningful, whole. "Thus, [our proposal] stands as a materialized representation for the individual within the Islamic community of Kosovo."
Natural daylight softly descends through the modulated plenum, creating a uniform prayer hall. Perforations throughout the facade and interior wooden panels enable a visual transparency that, Dürig AG expects, should spawn a dialogue between individuals inside the mosque and pedestrians in the city.