The project devised a visual structure for a new facade for an arts foundation, giving it a less domestic and more institutional appearance. It also involved some general preservation work on three 1920s houses. The idea for the layered form of the new facade emerged from the nature of the site itself - a complex stratification of diverse historical layers. Rather than attempt a nostalgic interpretation of the site’s historical content, the strategy was to add another layer hybridising the two elements - concrete and stone - that set the cadence of the surrounding neighbourhood.
al-Asad, Mohammad. "Cultural Projects: An Enthusiastic Embrace". In Contemporary Architecture and Urbanism in the Middle East, 68-97. Gainesville: University Press of Florida, 2012. (Arabic version)
Beginning at the end of the first Gulf War, the Middle East entered a new era of architectural and urban development defined by increased levels of globalization and private sector investment. In the decade that followed, the region was home to a wealth of architectural projects that challenged conventional thinking about architecture and the Middle East itself. Mohammad al-Asad provides an in-depth examination of an abundance of these projects, from homes and schools to hotels and religious centers. Contemporary Architecture and Urbanism in the Middle East examines the economic, political, and cultural context in which the projects were created. The book’s photographs bring attention to previously unaddressed aspects of modern Arabic architecture, highlighting local talent emerging throughout the region.
This article is an Arabic translation of the original English version, which can also be found on Archnet.