June 3, 2023

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3 Iranian projects nominated for Aga Khan Award for Architecture

TEHRAN – Three Iranian buildings have been nominated for the 2022 Aga Khan Award for Architecture (AKAA) as the organizers have announced their shortlist.

Aban House, Argo Contemporary Art Museum and Cultural Center and Jadgal Elementary School are among 20 projects competing for a share of the $1 million prize, one of the largest in architecture.

Aban House designed and implemented by USE Studio is a three-story residence arranged around three open courtyards on a narrow rectangular site in Isfahan’s historic center.

The ground-floor kitchen is the nucleus of the house; the living room is located on the first floor, and the bedrooms are on the upper floor; a terrace on the roof provides expansive views over the central Iranian city. 

The frame structure of the house is clad entirely with handmade local ochre-colored brick laid in a variety of horizontal and vertical patterns. 

The exterior façade is blind, while all of the interior spaces enjoy abundant lighting from the three courtyards.

Dating back to over 100 years ago, the Argo Contemporary Art Museum & Cultural Center was formerly a Tehran brewery that had been abandoned for decades. ASA North, an Iranian-Austrian company, converted the building into an independent art museum. 

The architect’s aim in designing it was to create a dialogue between old and new by inserting a new foundation and metal structure to support floating concrete floors and roofs independently of the original exterior walls.  Restored brickwork is indicated by deeply recessed pointing. Former basement brewing pools were converted into sunken galleries.

The Jadgal Elementary School is located in the village of Seyyedbar in the southeastern Iranian province of Sistan-Baluchestan.

DAAZ Office designed and implemented the structure based on a request from villagers for building a school. The plan to build the school led to the idea of having it also serve as a sustainable development center for surrounding areas, nurturing creativity, freedom and critical thinking.

Standing in a vast field, its enclosing wall is treated not defensively but as an inviting, playful shell featuring large irregular-shaped perforations, with one thicker portion housing a tuck shop, concierge and storage space. 

Inside the wall, classrooms are joined around a large circular courtyard, fanning out to create triangular secondary yards for air circulation and outdoor activities. 

The non-hierarchically designed complex also accommodates a library and a multipurpose space for community activities, crafts, or tourist accommodations. 

Managed by villagers and teachers, the school’s maintenance is funded by income from tourism plus sales of needlework made onsite by local women.

Photos of the 20 shortlisted entries are on display at Kings Cross, London in an exhibition, which will be running until June 30.

Photo: This file shows art aficionados visiting an exhibition at the Argo Contemporary Art Museum and Cultural Center in Tehran.


Original News : https://www.tehrantimes.com/news/473776/3-Iranian-projects-nominated-for-Aga-Khan-Award-for-Architecture

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