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Divided Congregation pt.2

Part of Amman Design Week 2017

(Design Moves Life Moves Design)


The mosque has always played an integral role in the fabric of arab and islamic cities. It has developed into a highly sophisticated urban code that allowed land developers to strike a balance between community and spirtual needs.

The urban fabric of Jeddah attests to the central role the mosque plays in the creation of our environment.


This work examines the role of the mosque in shaping contemporary Saudi urban culture. An analysis of the conception, commission, and operation of the mosque as a building typology reveals a complex relationship between religious and community needs. The right balance between the sacred and the profane produces a beautiful harmonious city. This requires an alignment between concept, experience, and desire represented as follows:

Layer 1/Concept:


The idea of a city Centered around the mosque, a sign for religious dominion, piety and an act of faith Visual Representation: Mosque walking distance radii are overlapped onto the city fabric to demonstrate its relevance as an organizational typology.

Layer 2/ Experience:


The form of the city Sometimes vibrant , other times derilict. The mosque is a place for congregation and community. It is the most prevalent typology of public space in the city. Most activities besides ritual prayer are non-religious, including market stalls, cigarette breaks and exchange of local news. Visual Representation: The city fabric according to the original 1989 expansion limit. Public spaces are highlighted to reveal their association with mosques and scarcity in comparison

Layer 3/ Desire: The Ideal city


“Whoever build a mosque for Allah – be it large or small – Allah will build for him a house in Paradise.”

-The Prophet Mohammed (PBUH)


A promised house in heaven is the reward for whomever commissions the construction of a mosque. It is this bounty that the pious will reap in the afterlife that plays a critical role in the conception and commission of mosques. This desire for a life beyond our earthly existence has manifested itself in the western tradition in concepts like Utopia, the city of God, heavenly Jerusalem.


What is the projection of these mosques as houses in the heavenly urban fabric?

program: installation

location: Amman, Jordan

duration: 6 weeks

collaborator: amman design week, art media jordan

year: 2017

status: finished

Visual Representation: Vertical rods connect all layersfrom concept to desire. The city is imagined as a gridiron plan following the roman concept of axis mundi, and the artificiality of the New York urban fabric

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