Architecture and Representation

Studio-X Amman

“Architecture and Representation” is a public symposium organized by the Columbia University Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation’s (GSAPP) Studio-X Amman at the Columbia Global Centers | Middle East as part of a design studio taught by Amale Andraos (Assistant Professor of Architecture at GSAPP).

By Studio-X Amman: The question of representation in architecture once pitted architects against one another through heated debates as the field experienced post-modern thinking’s nested waves. Today, it is rarely discussed even as the globalized faith in the Iconic and the possibility of its intended meaning continues unabashed. In the Middle East in particular, the proliferation of references to the mythical ‘Traditional Islamic City’ or to the innocence of a nomadic past (as well as the default and random use of arched openings and geometric patterned surfaces) has rendered representation ‘lazy’. At a critical time of instability, anxiety and change, it seems important that Architecture re-engages the question of representation with the seriousness and complexity that it deserves.


By addressing the broad notion of representation in architecture through the participants’ research and practice (in Amman, Beirut, Cairo, or Jerusalem), we aim to present a rich and diverse set of issues to be developed further in future steps of this initiative. The notion of representation in architecture translates into ideas on narratives, images, and political agency (or invisibility), and their role in the conception, fabrication, destruction and interpretation of the built environment (or of its spectral remains).


Senan Abdelqader (SAA, Jerusalem)
Yasser Elsheshtawy (UAE University, Al Ain)
Makram El Kadi (L.E.FT, New York)
Shahira Fahmy (SFA, Cairo)
Ahmad Humeid (Syntax, Amman)
Bernard Khoury (DW5, Beirut)

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Opening remarks by Amale Andraos and Nora Akawi (Columbia University GSAPP)

Event will take place on Saturday October 5th, 2013 11AM – 6PM at the Columbia Global Centers | Middle East

For more information please check Studio-X Amman Facebook page.


Previus articles for Bernard Koury, Click here

Previus article for Shahira Fahmy, Click here

Previus article for Senan Abdelqader, Click here

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