clusters of volumes & voids weave through airport terminal for islamic arts biennale in jeddah

clusters of volumes & voids weave through airport terminal for islamic arts biennale in jeddah

islamic arts biennale complex hosts inaugural festival

 

Over the past few weeks, Jeddah’s SOM-designed Western Hajj airport terminal has been transformed into a new cultural landmark as a backdrop for the inaugural Islamic Arts Biennale. Award-winning duo Giò Forma Architects and Black Engineering have teamed up to unveil the Biennale Complex — conceiving the space as a cluster of concrete volumes and voids centered around a serene water plaza to transport visitors through an evocative journey exploring Saudi Arabia‘s Islamic heritage.

 

Fusing past and present, the hosting complex sits in dialogue with its context while boldly expressing independence in its visual identity. Adopting the terminal’s grid layout at the basis of a new expression, the architects interweave the individual volumes throughout the space with sensitivity to both the site and the festival, seeking to ‘host and emphasize art, not to limit or overshadow it.’ Now open to the public, the Islamic Arts Biennale runs through April 23rd, 2023.

clusters of volumes & voids weave through airport terminal for islamic arts biennale complex in jeddah
view of the water plaza during dusk | image © Marilyn Clark

 

 

giò forma and black engineering interweave past and present

 

Italian studio Giò Forma Architects and studio Black Engineering draw on the typology and ambience of the King Abdulaziz International Airport’s Hajj terminal — designed by SOM in 1981 — to devise their concept for the Islamic Arts Biennale Complex. The architectural design celebrates and translates the terminal’s harmonious dialogue between volumes and voids and depths and perspectives, unfolding as an exploration of contrasts, compositions, and materiality.

 

Further inspired by the modularity of the existing tent structures, the project is shaped by a series of clusters comprising stacked geometric volumes of various sizes and proportions. The individual volumes are arranged in a rhythmic sequence that navigates the program into separate functions and guides visitors on a journey through culture and history. The structures create diverse galleries aimed at inspiring artists to interact with their spatial configurations, as seen by the opening exhibition curated by DBF and OMA.

clusters of volumes & voids weave through airport terminal for islamic arts biennale complex in jeddah
a rhythmic sequence of voids and volumes | image © Marilyn Clark

 

 

a sequence of geometric volumes center around a water plaza

 

The structures center around a communal plaza characterized by a highly reflective body of water which exudes a touch of lightweight freshness and mirrors an ‘ethereal sense of contemplation across the space.’ The vertical reflection generates a new experiential dimension, dragging the eye further out to the horizon and establishing a monumental visual structure for the first Islamic Arts Biennale.

 

An innovative construction system shapes the Biennale Complex, based on high-tech pre-cast GRC panels constructed off-site and assembled on site. The facade reveals itself in minimalist expressions, punctuated by linear textures that alternate between solid panels and transparent lattices which filter light, create natural ventilation, and maintain visual connection between the indoors and outdoors.

clusters of volumes & voids weave through airport terminal for islamic arts biennale complex in jeddah
Islamic Arts Biennale Complex hosts the inaugural event | image © Marilyn Clark

clusters of volumes & voids weave through airport terminal for islamic arts biennale complex in jeddah
Biennale building and Hajj terminal reflecting in the water mirror | image © Marek Wolynski

islamic-arts-biennale-complex-gio-forma-black-engineering-designboom-wide2

image © Marilyn Clark

clusters of volumes & voids weave through airport terminal for islamic arts biennale complex in jeddah
view of Gallery 4 | image © Giò Forma

clusters of volumes & voids weave through airport terminal for islamic arts biennale complex in jeddah
passage between the public program and offices | image © Marilyn Clark

islamic-arts-biennale-complex-gio-forma-black-engineering-designboom-wide4

dialogue between forms and materiality, old and new | image © Giò Forma

 

1/4
Galleries 4 and 5 and Biennale restaurant | image © Marilyn Clark
Galleries 4 and 5 and Biennale restaurant | image © Marilyn Clark
shisha terrace | image © Giò Forma
shisha terrace | image © Giò Forma
1
 
1
 

project info:

 

name: Islamic Arts Biennale Complex

location: Jeddah, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

client: Diriyah Biennale Foundation / MOC

strategic planning and creative project management: Black Engineering

signature architect and design: Giò Forma Architects, Artists, and Designers

exhibit and landscape design: OMA

civil engineering, MEP and structures: F&M Middle East

lighting design: Glare Lighting

general contractor: JV NTCC / Tashyeed

PM: Mace Group

 

event: Islamic Arts Biennale 2023

curatorial team: Sumayya Vally, Artistic Director, Dr. Omniya Abdel Barr, Conservation Architect and Historian of Islamic Art and Architecture, Dr. Saad Al- Rashid, leading Saudi Scholar and Archaeologist, Dr. Julian Raby, Scholar of Islamic Art

plot: 120,00 sqm

gross built area: 30,000 sqm

completion year: 2023

KEEP UP WITH OUR DAILY AND WEEKLY NEWSLETTERS
suscribe on designboom
- see sample
- see sample
suscribe on designboom

ARCHITECTURE IN JEDDAH (7)

ART AND ARCHITECTURE IN SAUDI ARABIA (83)

CONCRETE ARCHITECTURE AND DESIGN (677)

MUSEUMS AND GALLERIES (635)

SOM (78)

PRODUCT LIBRARY

a diverse digital database that acts as a valuable guide in gaining insight and information about a product directly from the manufacturer, and serves as a rich reference point in developing a project or scheme.

designboom will always be there for you

milan, new york, beijing, tokyo,  since 1999
X
5