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 “the worst damage that Isil has inflicted on Iraqi archaeology”. — theartnewspaper.com
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.Related stories in the Archinect news:Destruction of Iraq’s oldest Christian monastery by ISIS militants went unreported for...
In the first case of its kind, the Islamic extremist Ahmad al-Faqi al-Mahdi has today (22 August), pleaded guilty to war crimes for destroying historic monuments in the ancient city of Timbuktu in northern Mali. Al-Mahdi is accused of ordering the razing of nine mausoleums and the 15th-century Sidi Yahia mosque. It is the first time the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague has heard a case about the demolition of cultural heritage. — theartnewspaper.com
Learn more about Timbuktu's outstanding value as a world heritage site on UNESCO's website.Related stories in the Archinect news:Palmyra after ISIS: a first look at the level of destructionDestruction of Iraq’s oldest Christian monastery by ISIS militants went unreported for 16 monthsFear grows...
Brutalism will never happen again. Our stock of Brutalism is limited, and sadly under constant attack. The demolition and ‘refurbishment’ of great buildings by Rudolph, I M Pei, Denys Lasdun and other giants of the movement should be taken as seriously as would the loss of buildings by Donato Bramante, Christopher Wren or Frank Lloyd Wright. Brutalism deserves far better than the wrecker’s ball: it was the pinnacle of world architecture through all of history. — Aeon
Related stories in the Archinect news:#SOSBrutalism campaign lists endangered buildingsBrutal paper cut-outs (of real-life buildings)Brutalism's struggle to stay relevant: a few more buildings we lost in 2015
Is planning still important in a city that's been razed to the ground by civil war? Syrian architect Marwa Al-Sabouni thinks so. She describes life in the city of Homs, which has sustained massive destruction during the Syrian war, and reveals what she'd like it to look like in the future. — abc.net.au
Related stories in the Archinect news:New MoMA exhibition explores the architecture of displacementBefore + after photos of Syria's devastated heritagePalmyra after ISIS: a first look at the level of destruction
The death toll rose to 350 on Monday from a devastating earthquake that hit Ecuador at the weekend, as rescuers hunted for survivors, victims clamored for aid and looting broke out in the Andean nation's shattered coastal region.
More than 2,000 people were injured in Saturday night's 7.8 magnitude quake, which ripped apart buildings and roads and knocked out power along the Pacific coastline. — Reuters
Related stories in the Archinect news:A 6.4 magnitude earthquake has just struck JapanTaiwan earthquake: tin cans found as fillers may have caused high-rise to collapseShigeru Ban builds earthquake-proof homes in Nepal: "I'm encouraging people to copy my ideas. No copyrights."
As the Two-Way reported on Sunday, the Syrian government says its forces have retaken the desert city of Palmyra, in the center of Syria.
The self-declared Islamic State seized the city in May of last year — and soon unleashed a wave of destruction on its defenders, inhabitants and archaeological treasures. — npr.org
Previously in the Archinect news:ISIS militants have reportedly blown up Palmyra's Arch of TriumphISIS blows up 2,000-year-old Baalshamin temple in PalmyraISIS beheads leading archaeologist in PalmyraISIS militants seize control of ancient Syrian city of Palmyra
The Venice Lagoon is the most endangered heritage site in Europe, declared the pan-European heritage organisation Europa Nostra at an event today [...].
Rising sea levels, swelling number of tourists, large cruise ships in the lagoon, the erosion of the sea bed, dredging deeper channels and the lack of an agreed management plan for Venice has created a perfect storm of threats to the city’s preservation. — theartnewspaper.com
Previously in the Archinect news:Unesco threatens to put Venice on its Heritage at Risk listLeading museum directors, artists and architects call on Italian government to ban giant ships from VeniceHow We Picture a City: Venice and Google Maps
A huge fire has destroyed a building set to become Central Asia’s tallest tower in the Kazakh capital, Astana.
The fire broke out in the early hours of Saturday morning at the construction site of the Abu Dhabi Plaza, an 88-storey tower standing at 381 metres high, designed by architecture firm HKR architects and being built by United Arab Emirates developer Aldar Properties and contractor Arabtec.
According to the Kazakh interior ministry, the most likely cause of the fire was a heater. — calvertjournal.com
If in fact completed, this is what the 382 m/1,253 ft Abu Dhabi Plaza tower will look like. Image via the website of the building's architects, HKR Architects.Related stories in the Archinect news:The New East is where western starchitect dreams come true (or turn into nightmares)In Kazakhstan, a...
Across Syria, where a seemingly unstoppable war is about to enter a third year, a heritage built over 5,000 years or more is being steadily buried under rubble. — The Guardian
Related:What Does the Syrian Refugee Crisis Mean to Architecture?The new Monument Men: with 3D cameras and GPS data against cultural annihilation in Syria and beyondTo preserve cultural memory, these Syrian refugees recreate lost monuments in miniature
Iraq’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. — theartnewspaper.com
Related stories in the Archinect news:Fear grows over ISIS threat against Unesco World Heritage site in LibyaISIS militants have reportedly blown up Palmyra's Arch of TriumphISIS blows up 2,000-year-old Baalshamin temple in PalmyraISIS beheads leading archaeologist in Palmyra
Brutalism lost the good fight in 2015. [...]
Demolition on another building by Johansen began late last year as well: Stage Theater, once known as the Mummers Theater, in Oklahoma City. The Oklahoman‘s Steve Lackmeyer called the 1970 project the number-one modernist building in the city that should have been spared. [....] Preservationists had hoped to turn it into a children’s museum. Models of the building show what a delightful museum it might have made [...]. — citylab.com
Brutalike stories in the Archinect news:Orange County legislators fail to save Paul Rudolph's Government CenterArt college professor suggests makeover for brutalist Boston City HallBrutalism: the great architectural polarizerNew movement urges to call Brutalism 'Heroic' instead
Concern is growing over the threat to the Roman antiquities of Sabratha after Isil supporters temporarily occupied the Libyan town. [...]
After the recent destruction of antiquities by Isil extremists in Iraq (Mosul, Nineveh, Nimrud and Hatra) and Syria (Palmyra), there is great concern about Libya. Sabratha, a Unesco World Heritage Site, was a Phoenician trading centre in the fifth-century BC and later became an important Roman port. — theartnewspaper.com
Previously in the Archinect news:The new Monument Men: with 3D cameras and GPS data against cultural annihilation in Syria and beyondISIS militants have reportedly blown up Palmyra's Arch of TriumphISIS blows up 2,000-year-old Baalshamin temple in PalmyraISIS beheads leading archaeologist in Palmyra
That’s why a team from the Institute for Digital Archaeology (IDA) is turning to the next best option—using technology to protect cultural heritage.
Founded in 2012 by Roger Michel, IDA is a joint effort between Harvard University and Oxford University to create an open-source database of high-resolution images and three-dimensional graphics of things like paper and papyrus documents, epigraphs and small artifacts.
Work on what IDA has named the Million Image Database began in early 2015. — newsweek.com
The photo shows the Baal Shamin temple prior to its destruction. Volunteers of the Institute for Digital Archaeology were able to digitally archive the 2,000-year-old structure for the Million Image Database project just in time before ISIS fighters seized control of Palmyra's historic...
Islamic State militants in northern Syria have blown up another monument in the ancient city of Palmyra, officials and local sources say.
The Arch of Triumph was "pulverised" by the militants who control the city, a Palmyra activist told AFP news agency.
It is thought to have been built about 2,000 years ago.
IS fighters have already destroyed two ancient temples at the site, described by Unesco as one of the most important cultural centres of the ancient world. — bbc.com
Previously in the Archinect news:ISIS attacks second ancient Palmyra temple this monthISIS blows up 2,000-year-old Baalshamin temple in PalmyraISIS beheads leading archaeologist in PalmyraISIL destroys ancient mausoleums in historic Palmyra
Islamic State has destroyed part of another ancient temple in the Syrian city of Palmyra, according to activists on social media and a group monitoring the conflict, this time targeting the Temple of Bel. [...]
It is the second temple that Islamic State has attacked in Palmyra this month. On 25 August, the group detonated explosives in the ancient Baal Shamin temple, an act that the cultural agency Unesco has called a war crime aimed at wiping out a symbol of Syria’s diverse cultural heritage. — theguardian.com
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