Designing Modernity: Architecture in the Arab World 1945-1973

DOCOMOMO International would like to draw your attention to a new book launch and symposium – Designing Modernity: Architecture in the Arab World 1945-1973, George Arbid – Philipp Oswalt (ed.). Please see the press release below:

Since 2019, the Goethe-Institut Palestinian territories, together with international experts, has been examining how Modernism in architecture emerged and unfolded in the Arab world. “In cities like Beirut, Amman, Kuwait City, Jericho, Gaza City and Cairo, outstanding modern architecture developed in the wake of the Second World War, which is unique and diverse in itself,” explain the architectural experts George Arbid and Philip Oswalt. “With the book project, we want to honor this often neglected cultural heritage and thus not only make a contribution to its preservation, but also correct the misleading image of western-dominated architectural history”. The result is a presentation of ten case studies in Iraq, Lebanon, Kuwait, Syria, Palestine, Jordan, Morocco and Egypt involving Amin Alsaden, Aziza Chaouni, Dima J. Yaser, Janset Shawash, Leïla El-Wakil, Mercedes Volait, Mohamed Elshahed, Pelin Tan, Rafee Hakky, Sara Saragoça, Wael Samhouri and George Arbid.

The bilingual publication in Arabic and English is published by Jovis (Berlin) and Riwaq (Ramallah) and will be available as a printed book as well as an e-book.

The symposium with the authors, invited experts and the editors will take place on May 6 (10 AM to 6:30 PM) and May 7 (10 AM to 4 PM) in the House of World Cultures. This will be followed by the book presentation on May 7, 2022 at 6 PM, during which speakers from the Arab Region and Europe will present and discuss the publication and the results of the symposium. Themes of the sessions are transculturality, knowledge production, protest and activism and preservation, followed by the book presentation on Sat. May 7, 2022 at 6 p.m. by George Arbid (Beirut) and Philipp Oswalt (Berlin/Kassel) and lecture and commentary by Tom Avermaete (Zurich), Khaldun Bshara (Ramallah) and Mercedes Volait (Paris), moderated by Caline Matar (Beirut). The discussion will be held in English and will be live streamed.

Detailed Program of the event is found here.

ٌProject information in Arabic is found here.

Registration on Zoom is found here.

The book can be purchased from Jovis-Verlag here.

The publication Designing Modernity: Architecture in the Arab World 1945-1973 is a project initiated by the Goethe-Institut Palestinian territories. The work is published by Jovis Verlag and Riwaq, Center for Architectural Conservation. The project was funded by the Federal Foreign Office and the Goethe-Institut for the period 2019-2022. The symposium is funded by the Federal Agency for Civic Education.