Raised in the historic city of Isfahan, Mohammad Gharipour received
his Ph.D. in Architectural Theory and History from Georgia Institute of
Technology in 2008 and Masters of Architecture from the University of Tehran in
2000. He teaches architecture at Morgan State University and is the Director and Founding Editor of the International Journal of Islamic Architecture. His
areas of research include Japanese traditional and contemporary architecture,
Persianate gardens and architecture, and restorative environments. He is the
recipient of Spiro Kostof fellowship award from the Society of Architectural
Historians (SAH) in 2008 and the author of several publications including Persian Gardens and Pavilions: Reflections in
Poetry, Arts and History(I.B. Tauris, 2013). in 2014, Dr. Gharipour was presented with the National Endowment for Humanities Faculty Award for his research on Synagogues of Isfahan, Iran. He is also curator of the Archnet collection on Synagogues of Isfahan.
Lundström, Marie-Sofie. "Experiencing the Alhambra, An Illusive Site of Oriental Otherness." In International Journal of Islamic Architecture, Volume 1, Number 1, pp. 83-106, edited by Mohammad Gharipour, Bristol: Intellect, 2012.
Two travellers, the French romantic poet and novelist Thophile Gautier (1811–72) and the Finnish naturalist painter Albert Edelfelt (1854–1905), both visited the Alhambra palace in Granada: Gautier in 1840, Edelfelt in 1881. Their accounts of the palace are strikingly similar, although forty years separate their travels; written several years later, Edelfelt's narrative is imbued with a romanticism related to Gautier's. The aim is to show that the ambiguity of Gautier's and Edelfelt's statements of the Alhambra is due to their romantic preconceptions. I will compare their experiences by analysing what they saw during their journeys and how it was expressed in their texts; Gautier published his Voyage en Espagne in 1843, while Edelfelt's impressions are recorded in his letters to his mother. The result is that the Alhambra represented a dream world, which in many senses did not live up to the visitors' expectations. While Gautier was in constant search for the authenticity of the place, Edelfelt was deeply touched by the magnificence that met him in a labyrinth of fabulous beauty. However, the preconceived mental image they both held resulted in an experience that in many ways fell short of the idea they had formed of it in advance.