Topic for Debate
Glass architecture in the Islamic world
Glass is a new material to Islamic architecture, which is changing forever the shape of many buildings and the skyline of many citiies across the Islamic world.

How can Islamic architecture embrace glass and use it successfully within the cultural and environmental realities of Muslim societies?
Hani Alqahtani
Glass architecture in the Islamic world

In a sense, glass has been used sucessfully in Islamic architecture. Glass is used to make the surface of traditional glazed tiles used on many buildings. Using glass as a vitreous layer means tiles last longer and require less maintenance and of course are easier to keep clean.

I enjoy the use of "glass bubbles" as used in the ceilings of hammams. This use of minimal skylighting for spaces, means it minimises both the loss of heat from a hammam and minimises the heat of the sun in a covered market.

I am not an advocate of the modern indiscriminate use of glass-walled buildings, particularly in hot climates because they are unneccessary "hot houses" created by trapping the infra-red rays of the sun behind the glass. Plus, the use of air-conditioning to counteract the poor climatic design is an appalling misuse of energy.
Frank John Snelling
Glass architecture in the Islamic world
Dear Bro. Hani Alqahtani,

Your perception that glass is a new material to Islamic architecture is entirely wrong. Glass has been used for ages, but the quantity of usage has increased with time.

I.e., today, contemporary architecture has taken the world by storm. Mostly the elevations and interiors are greatly decorated with glass.

I would suggest, if you have time, to visit the Mausoleum of Hazrat Khawja Bandanawaz of Gulbarga, Karnataka, India. The gumbaz (dome) interiors have been entirely decorated with verses from the Quran, and it is a fine example of mirror or glass work.

You do find the use of glass in certain old mosques. In fact, in the past, they used multicolored glass to give value to mosques or mausoleums.

Today, it is just because of the contemporary use of glass that this colour usage has dwindled.

Hope this should change your perception about the use of glass in Islamic architecture.

Even today, one can find age-old mosque interiors with glass and crystal chandliers. This is just another example proving that the use of glass has been very much vital in Islamic architecture for ages.

Azmathulla Shariff
Azmathulla Shariff
Glass architecture in the Islamic world
Prince Charles visits Czech Republic

Britain's Prince Charles is in the Czech Republic on a three day visit at the invitation of President Vaclav Havel. The Prince, who has a keen interest in historical architecture, has visited the Czech capital on several previous occasions, setting up a Prague Heritage Fund together with the Czech President. After a warm reception at Prague Castle on Monday afternoon, Prince Charles was taken on a brief tour of the Palffy and Ledeburg Gardens, now beautifully renovated with the help of the Prague Heritage Fund. He also made a brief appearance at the Prague Business Leaders Forum and The English College. On Monday night Prince Charles attended a banquet given in his honour . The second day of his visit is to be spent in Moravia, the eastern part of the Czech Republic.
Now what the fund did ios they took older buildings and added glass fronts like mixing modren and old in some instances...
but with the modren utensils we have today i am wondering why cant we redesign a older artifacts with glass and maintain the look also ..interesting?
So-wise we can recreate some very fancy islamic artifact structures again in glass....
Sher Saddozai


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