The Revelation Mosque (the Al Dana Mosque) is an ambitious project created by Dubai-based architecture firm X-Architects and commissioned by Aldar Properties. The firm specialises in merging Arab culture and modern design, so this proposal of theirs is no exception: the architects provide an unconventional interpretation of traditional Islamic architecture while still preserving its essence.
According to the plan, the mosque will cover an area of 2,200 sqm and be situated in Al Dana North (Abu Dhabi), on a public seaside promenade facing the marina. The project involves transforming a traditional mosque dome and minarets so they better blend with their urban surroundings. The sahn (a courtyard typical of Islamic architecture) will be turned into a plaza, a publicly accessible place, this way bridging a religious function and city life. With its stunning design inspired by ripple marks, the line patterns found in dunes, the dome will act as an urban lantern at night. During the day, the high oculus (a circular window) that serves as a minaret will let natural light inside the building and thus, form a connection between the interior and the outdoor environment. In addition, it is a way to save energy.
While working on this proposal, the architects drew their inspiration from the moment of the revelation of the Quran in a cave in the Jabal Al Noor mountain. As a result, the mosque features large asymmetric domes, which symbolise the spiritual mountain, with a stepped spiral façade. The main prayer space is designed like a cave with irregular, textured concrete walls inscribed with verses from the Koran spiralling upwards.
As mentioned by X-Architects, what is also special about the Revelation Mosque is the fact that it is designed to “celebrate gender equality”. Ahmed Al-Ali, a principal of the firm, said: “The proposed design […] celebrates both male and female prayer halls equally. […] It offers a well-articulated, spatially unique prayer hall for females and [considers] it a main component of the design, rather than as an annexe or extension.”
To get more information about the project, please visit its official web page.
We would also recommend you to read our article about Zaha Hadid’s innovative architectural projects in the UAE. Besides, you might be interested in attending The Mosque: Place & Time, a current exhibition at MIA Library.
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