sited in a privileged location on the banks of dubai creek harbour, studio luca poian forms proposes a new iconic mosque. the project envisions an architectural language that is timeless in its materiality and tectonic principles, respectful with the islamic craft and tradition, and innovative with the integration of a new topological approach. located between the emerging development of dubai creek plaza and the lushness of ras al khor sanctuary, the scheme prioritises the need to establish clear contextual relationships to the surrounding city fabric whilst maintaining a respectful attitude towards the adjacent flora and fauna. acting as an urban scale threshold, the programs have a linear organization from east to west that invites visitors to disengage from the sounds of the city and enter the sacred realm of the prayer hall.

luca poian forms mosque
images by luca poian forms

 

 

luca poian forms had taken the basic organizational and compositional principles of the traditional mosque as a starting point. the scheme consists of two major spaces delineated within the boundaries of a unified perimeter wall: a grand indoor prayer hall and an adjoining exterior forecourt. the relationship between these two spaces establishes a clear axial sequence that takes visitors on a linear procession from the fabric of the city to the stillness of the temple, mediating the threshold between the public and the sacred; the physical and the spiritual.

luca poian forms mosque

 

 

the design investigates the use of double-curved vaults as a new topological approach in the design of religious structures. present in a variety of building typologies across the middle east, the vault is a tectonic element that takes advantage of basic geometric principles as a means of achieving a highly efficient distribution of forces whilst producing a rich spatial experience. luca poian forms takes this one step further by looking at a type of minimal surface known as the ‘scherk’ surface, generating a self-supported structural system that locally minimizes its area through a network of bridging arches arranged in a modular checkerboard pattern. the design is thus organised as a series of symmetrically disposed double-curved vaults of varying scale — ranging from the monumental proportions of the grand prayer hall to the slender profile of the minarets. the result is a rich and cohesive architectural language that not only enriches the spatial experience of the visitor, but proposes a new paradigm for the design of sacred architecture across the middle east.

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