Archinect - News 2017-07-24T04:57:41-04:00 ISIS believed to have bulldozed 2,900-year-old Assyrian ziggurat in Nimrud, Iraq Alexander Walter 2016-11-14T18:42:00-05:00 >2016-11-18T01:32:18-05:00 <img src="" width="650" height="796" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>One of the tallest surviving structures from the ancient world has been totally destroyed by Isil extremists at Nimrud, the former capital of Assyria, which was captured by Iraqi government forces on 13 November. The ziggurat, which was nearly 2,900 years old, was obliterated. Only the largest Egyptian pyramids are higher than Middle Eastern ziggurats and central American step pyramids. [...] incidents represent &ldquo;the worst damage that Isil has inflicted on Iraqi archaeology&rdquo;.</p></em><br /><br /><p><img title="" alt="" src=""></p><p>An older satellite photo from August 31, 2016 shows the Ziggurat and Temple of Ishtar still intact. Image via ASOR Cultural Heritage Initiatives Facebook page.</p><p>Related stories in the Archinect news:</p><ul><li><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Destruction of Iraq&rsquo;s oldest Christian monastery by ISIS militants went unreported for 16 months</a></li><li><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">ISIS continues destruction of ancient artefacts, burns Mosul library, smashes antique statues</a></li><li><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Palmyra after ISIS: a first look at the level of destruction</a></li><li><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">International Criminal Court hears first case of cultural destruction as war crimes</a></li></ul> Saddam Hussain's architectural heritage—and what to do with it Alexander Walter 2016-09-13T18:30:00-04:00 >2016-09-18T22:37:17-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="367" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>During his time in power, as head of state and as leader of the all-powerful, secularist Ba&rsquo;th party, Saddam would oversee an unprecedented program of monumental development across the historic city of Baghdad. This was not limited to monuments of war and hollow bronze shells, but enormous palatial complexes, museums, art galleries, and civic squares [...] marshal it, awkwardly, unevenly, into the post-industrial age, a modern city shaped by the aspirations and egotistical tastes of a despot.</p></em><br /><br /><p>Related stories in the Archinect news:</p><ul><li><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Iraq honors Zaha Hadid with commemorative stamp &mdash; which features rejected Tokyo stadium design</a></li><li><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Destruction of Iraq&rsquo;s oldest Christian monastery by ISIS militants went unreported for 16 months</a></li></ul> Iraq honors Zaha Hadid with commemorative stamp — which features rejected Tokyo stadium design Alexander Walter 2016-06-20T17:45:00-04:00 >2017-07-13T19:26:27-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="392" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>The Iraqi postal service has issued new postage stamps honoring two of the country's beloved architects: Zaha Hadid, who died in March, and Mohamed Makiya, who died last year at the age of 101. Hadid and Makiya both changed the perception of architecture in the Arab world and introduced some of the aesthetics of Arabic-inspired architecture in projects around the world.</p></em><br /><br /><p>A small selection of Archinect news posts covering ZHA's winning/not winning Tokyo Olympic Stadium bid:</p> <ul><li><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Zaha's Tokyo Olympic Stadium cancelled &ndash; Abe calls for a redesign from scratch</a></li><li><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Tokyo Olympics refusing to pay Zaha Hadid for work on the national stadium</a></li><li><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Zaha Hadid issues disappointed statement on Tokyo Olympic Stadium decision</a></li><li><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Zaha Hadid reportedly not giving up on Tokyo stadium plans</a></li></ul><p>H/T <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Curbed</a></p> Zaha on Zaha: "I always thought, you know, I should do well because the work is good." Julia Ingalls 2016-03-31T14:09:00-04:00 >2016-04-10T16:05:49-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="488" border="0" title="" alt="" /><p>What was it like to be Zaha Hadid? From teaching to developing her vision to turning down an opportunity to work with Rem Koolhaas, in this remembrance we collect a few of Zaha's first-person writings and interviews about her life and work from her unparalleled, groundbreaking career.&nbsp;</p><p><strong>On being a woman and an Arab, excerpted from <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">The Guardian</a>, 2012:</strong></p><p>Being an Arab woman and a modern architect certainly don't exclude each other &ndash; when I was growing up in Iraq, there were many women architects. You cannot believe the enormous resistance I've faced just for being an Arab, and a woman on top of that. It is like a double-edged sword. The moment my woman-ness is accepted, the Arab-ness seems to become a problem.</p><p>I've broken beyond the barrier, but it's been a very long struggle. It's made me tougher and more precise &ndash; and maybe this is reflected in my architecture. I still experience resistance but I think this keeps you on the go.&nbsp;</p><p>As a woman in architecture, you need confidence. Sometimes, w...</p> Destruction of Iraq’s oldest Christian monastery by ISIS militants went unreported for 16 months Alexander Walter 2016-01-20T17:01:00-05:00 >2016-01-20T14:03:00-05:00 <img src="" width="650" height="325" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>Iraq&rsquo;s earliest Christian monastery has been destroyed by Isil extremists. [...] This seems to have occurred in September 2014, three months after the site on the southern outskirts of Mosul was seized by Isil forces. [...] If the near-total destruction of Mar Elia is confirmed, 16 months after the event, it is worrying that it went unreported, since it suggests that other Christian sites may have also been destroyed without publicity.</p></em><br /><br /><p>Related stories in the Archinect news:</p><ul><li><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Fear grows over ISIS threat against Unesco World Heritage site in Libya</a></li><li><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">ISIS militants have reportedly blown up Palmyra's Arch of Triumph</a></li><li><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">ISIS blows up 2,000-year-old Baalshamin temple in Palmyra</a></li><li><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">ISIS beheads leading archaeologist in Palmyra</a></li></ul> ISIS continues destruction of ancient artefacts, burns Mosul library, smashes antique statues Alexander Walter 2015-02-27T12:42:00-05:00 >2015-03-01T22:10:30-05:00 <img src="" width="640" height="360" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>Islamic State militants ransacked Mosul&rsquo;s central museum, destroying priceless artefacts that are thousands of years old, in the group&rsquo;s latest rampage which threatens to upend millennia of coexistence in the Middle East. The destruction of statues and artefacts that date from the Assyrian and Akkadian empires, revealed in a video published by Isis on Thursday, drew ire from the international community and condemnation by activists and minorities that have been attacked by the group.</p></em><br /><br /><!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><head><meta></head></html> Monuments Men: U.S. Army struggles to recruit enough heritage specialists for conflict areas Alexander Walter 2015-01-28T16:53:00-05:00 >2015-02-02T18:19:34-05:00 <img src="" width="650" height="418" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>The US Army is looking to recruit the next generation of &ldquo;Monuments Men and Women&rdquo; to help preserve sites and cultural property in combat zones and to advise troops on heritage. [...] It is turning to museum directors, archaeologists and preservationists to fill these posts. [...] With extremist groups such as Islamic State using the destruction of cultural heritage as a tool of war, such expertise is needed more than ever.</p></em><br /><br /><p><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Related</a></p> The British countryside family who are designing entire cities in Iraq Alexander Walter 2014-08-28T13:38:00-04:00 >2014-09-03T19:13:21-04:00 <img src="" width="460" height="276" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>&ldquo;The cities we&rsquo;re working on were neglected by Saddam Hussein, so they have little basic infrastructure,&rdquo; says Elliot Hartley, 36, a director of Garsdale Design. But why can&rsquo;t Iraqis redesign their own cities? &ldquo;There has been a massive brain drain of professionals from Iraq over the years, and a lack of investment in local government planning departments, which means that the skills aren&rsquo;t there &ndash; yet,&rdquo; [...]. More improbably yet, only one member of the family firm [...] has set foot in Iraq.</p></em><br /><br /><!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><head><meta></head></html> Blowing up Mosul's historic mosques is 'a war crime' Alexander Walter 2014-07-28T13:12:00-04:00 >2014-07-28T13:17:21-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="366" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>Leading British archaeologist and member of the House of Lords, Colin Renfrew, says the destruction of historic mosques in Mosul, northern Iraq, by Islamic state militants (Isis) &ldquo;is a disaster for the cultural heritage of Iraq, and indeed of Islam&rdquo;. The Prophet Jirjis mosque and shrine in Mosul was destroyed on 27 July, according to unconfirmed press reports. The 14th-century mosque was the latest in a series of holy sites targeted by the jihadist group.</p></em><br /><br /><p>Previously: <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Islamic State jihadis destroy ancient mosque in Mosul</a></p> Islamic State jihadis destroy ancient mosque in Mosul Archinect 2014-07-24T18:38:00-04:00 >2014-07-26T20:14:19-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="488" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>The mosque was built on an archaeological site dating back to 8th century BC and is said to be the burial place of the prophet, who in stories from both the Bible and Qur&rsquo;an is swallowed by a whale. It was renovated in the 1990s under Iraq&rsquo;s late dictator Saddam Hussein and until the recent militant blitz that engulfed Mosul, remained a popular destination for religious pilgrims from around the world.</p></em><br /><br /><!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><head><meta></head></html> It's Official: Zaha Hadid will design the Iraq Parliament, regardless of the fact she came 3rd in the competition Nicholas Korody 2014-06-25T17:01:00-04:00 >2016-08-10T14:44:05-04:00 <img src="" width="530" height="469" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>Zaha Hadid has won the scheme to design a new parliament complex in Iraq &ndash; despite coming third in the original RIBA-run international competition.</p></em><br /><br /><p>The news is also the first official statement that Assemblage, whose designs won the competition, will not get to realize their vision. This will be the second building Hadid will design in her native country after<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"> the 2012 announcement that she will helm the Central Bank of Iraq project.</a></p><p>Hadid's plans for the Iraq Parliament have been marred by controversy, chiefly because they have been kept secret from Iraqi architects and the architectural community at large. Those who have seen the designs have not been favorable in their comments.&nbsp;</p><p>Meanwhile, the US Embassy in Baghdad &ndash; probably the most significant architectural project in the city since the 2003 invasion &ndash; is <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">under threat from the Isis insurgency surging through the city</a>. The precarious condition of the city makes it hard to imagine that Hadid's ambitious designs will come to fruition anytime soon. More pointedly, it calls into question the need for such expensive architecture in places of near constant social upheaval, partic...</p> Controversial Embassy in Baghdad Under Threat From Isis Nicholas Korody 2014-06-23T18:13:00-04:00 >2014-06-26T17:55:15-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="426" border="0" title="" alt="" /><p>As militant Sunni fighters from the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (Isis) continue their assault on Iraq, following their recent take-over of Baquba, <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">President Barack Obama has ordered the deployment of 275 combat-ready troops to help defend Baghdad and, in particular, the new and expensive embassy there</a>. At 4,700,000 sq ft, the <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Yaeger Architecture</a>-designed embassy is the <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">largest in the world&nbsp;</a>and, with a cost exceeding $700 million, it was the <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">most expensive to construct</a>. Its multiple gyms, conference rooms, pools, private gardens, department stores, and fortified apartments are all protected by blast-resistant walls and multiple security checks. An American working at the embassy has no real need to venture beyond its walls. The complex is a city-within-a-city &ndash;&ndash; or, more accurately, a city-within-a-city-within-a-city, as the embassy is situated in the heavily-fortified &ldquo;Green Zone&rdquo; that harbors Baghdad&rsquo;s international population.</p><p>The urgent rush to protect the supposedly impe...</p> New Baghdad library takes step closer to realization Archinect 2013-08-26T14:59:00-04:00 >2013-08-27T15:21:54-04:00 <img src="" width="460" height="276" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>Designs for a new Baghdad library boasting the largest single-space reading room in the world have taken a step closer to being realised after the architects got the green light to put the project out to tender in September. The Iraq National Library was devastated by fire and looting when allied troops entered the city in 2003. An estimated 60% of archival materials [...] and 25% of books, newspapers, rare books, historical photographs and maps were destroyed.</p></em><br /><br /><!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><head><meta></head></html> Assemblage wins $1bn Iraqi parliament building comeptition, while organizers continue discussions with 3rd place winner Hadid Archinect 2013-01-16T15:24:00-05:00 >2013-01-21T10:32:56-05:00 <img src="" width="634" height="565" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>A London architect firm has been declared the winner of an international competition to design a new $1bn Iraqi parliament building in Baghdad. Assemblage architects was one of 130 firms to put forward a design for the &pound;620million scheme. But while Assemblage received its $250,000 prize in August, the designs have only just been released as the Iraqi Government had remained in talks with a rival, which came third place in the competition, Zaha Hadid Architects, The Guardian has reported.</p></em><br /><br /><!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><head><meta></head></html> Zaha Hadid: 'Being an Arab and a woman is a double-edged sword' Archinect 2012-11-15T12:06:00-05:00 >2012-11-19T18:05:01-05:00 <img src="" width="258" height="262" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>Zaha Hadid on growing up in Iraq, getting the architecture bug, and the legacy of her Olympics Aquatics Centre</p></em><br /><br /><!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><head><meta></head></html> Iraq aims to revive Baghdad's 'lost' Le Corbusier building Archinect 2012-04-23T14:09:00-04:00 >2012-04-23T15:58:11-04:00 <img src="" width="630" height="329" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>Designed by the famed architect Le Corbusier, built under Saddam Hussein then forgotten: such was the fate of a gym in Baghdad that Iraq now wants, with the help of France, to restore to its former stature. Located in the east of the capital, the massive concrete structure has surprisingly withstood the decades of war, internecine fighting and sanctions that have hit the country.</p></em><br /><br /><!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><head><meta></head></html> The Land of Broken Promises Archinect 2012-04-05T16:19:00-04:00 >2012-04-05T16:33:55-04:00 <img src="" width="553" height="369" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>In 1958, Baghdad was featured in Time magazine&mdash;not as a hotbed of revolutionary, civil or sectarian strife, but for its ambitious plans for the world's most famous architects, among them Frank Lloyd Wright, Walter Gropius, Le Corbusier and Alvar Aalto, to recapture through their modern buildings the city's former glory.</p></em><br /><br /><!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><head><meta></head></html>