relation between the Orient and the Occident has always been a critical source
of polarity and a subject for extensive literary criticism. For architecture,
however, very little criticism of the discourse of Western architecture in the
East, if any, was brought to the fore.
image of Burj Al-Arab (Tower of Al-Arab) in Dubai is heavy with cultural meaning yet to be
investigated. For cross-cultural meaning to convey its message, its interpretation
has to be shared between the peoples of the cultures involved. In our case
here, the structural and lavish material spectacle is without a doubt not
misinterpreted. On the contrary, it is a result of a profound intentional
celebration of Capitalism and the power of money. Its symbolic gesture as a
sail approaching the land but never reaching it, relates vividly, though
literally, to the cultural heritage. This understanding is shared by both
parties involved in the spectacle realisation as well as the spectators.
However, the building view remains the public view from the land, while, the
less accessible view from the sea projects another image (see attached).
has to look long and deep enough at this particular view before the shadow of misinterpretation
is casted on its cross-cultural meaning. The question then forces
itself: what was really in the mind of its designer Tom Wright of W. S. Atkins
and Partners, UK? The answer, of course, is still in his mind but the cross-cultural (mis)interpretation is in the air and the wind is clearly
blowing from the sea.
For more images and
information of the building please see:
it is a lovely building,viewed from all sides,in all respect,even the technology adoptation to the context is very intersting,we need to waite for next two decades to find flows in the design as weather/change in technology/petrons's interest to maitain shall start abbing at the end of that time and we shall know about the cultural empact verses technology verses design form crumbaling.