Exploration MSS3 Fall 2021

Bridging Islamic Architecture with Nordic Architecture

Study of Mihrab

Mihrab is located on the Qibla wall which defines the direction for prayers to the worshippers. Therefore mihrab have a central place in an Islamic prayer hall and is required to be explored.

Mihrab Height

The best suited height of a mihrab depends on the height of the overall space. However it is important that the mihrab should be visible for all worshippers throughout the space, therefore a higher mihrab is favorable.

Mihrab height of 5 meters.

Mihrab Shape

The Nordic identity is about the restraint in the architectural language, a study was done into minimalist shapes. while sacred Islamic geometry describes a Mihrab as a waypoint towards Mecca and the Kaaba, the shape of the mihrab should not take over and be the focal point of spirituality. The rectangular mihrab indicates that we are directed towards a place on earth. The arched mihrab is based upon a rectangle and a half circle which represent a gateway between earth and something divine, which in this case is true about the Kaaba.

Rectangular and arch-shaped mihrab.

Mihrab and Daylight

There is something about how light enhances spirituality which I wanted to explore. While doing this exploration on light and mihrab, it became clear that some iterations may put more focus on the architecture rather than the spirituality that the space wants to achieve. But an inclined wall with a indent of a vertical mihrab created a great harmony between enhancing spirituality but at the same time not create to much focus on the mihrab and the person standing in it.

inclined wall with a vertical indent to create a mihrab.