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College of Design

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Sancaklar Mosque

I can't believe I've already been in Istanbul for two weeks! Life here is very different from Rome and I'm happy to say I love every second of it. Fast paced and filled with people/cats, Istanbul has so much to offer, especially for architecture students. The skyline varies from that of Minneapolis because it is speckled with minarets and other distinct features of mosques.
However, no matter how beautiful mosques are, is there only one way in which to design them? This past week for our Visual Culture class, we visited Emre Arolat Architects here in Istanbul to learn more about their projects. The one that really sparked my interest was the Sancaklar Mosque. Instead of building it out of domes and minarets, it is built into the land, playing off the tension between man-made and natural.
I enjoyed listening to some of the architects talk about the process they went through to make this mosque contemporary yet respectful of the Islamic faith. The end result in my view is a beautiful space that is a simple cave, which is awe inspiring. I hope that I will be able to bring this respect for nature and culture into the landscapes I design.

Landscape Design & Planning