New building for an Islamic cultural association with seminar rooms and prayer room

TYPE

Communal

LOCATION

Munich - Untersendling

YEAR

2021

PROJECT STATE

LPH5 - in progress

The new building for an Islamic cultural association stands for a modern, enlightened, western-oriented Islam, as historically shaped in Bosnia. As a meeting place, classroom and prayer house, the building is intended to convey Islamic values and philosophy through architecture and design. Access is via a fountain courtyard, which extends spatially into the building, to a foyer, which is connected to the prayer room on the upper floor via a cloakroom, washrooms and two staircases. Men and women share the circular prayer room and other rooms but access these by separate paths. The circular prayer room enables the alignment to Mecca, like a built quibla compass, and is covered with a visible wooden dome structure made of beech, constructed with 33 arches who refer to infinity and via the 99 names to Allah. The innovative engineering design is an expression of science and research, which have a historical tradition in Islam and which stand for progress and open-mindedness. The rotation on the upper floor to face Mecca is conveyed abstractly from the outside by the rotation of the brick layers on the facade. Brass markings in the rows of bricks mark the quibla. Room subdivisions with mobile partition walls make it possible to react variably to different spatial requirements in the course of the year, ranging from everyday things such as language courses or tutoring, reading the Koran in small groups or celebrations such as breaking the fast at Eid al-Fitr. This enables a wide variety of uses in the spatially limited, compact volume of the three-storey cube. 

From the outside, the two-storey structure with its dark brick facade blends in discreetly with the local environment and the dense tree population. Inviting, conveying a sense of security, and reserved, in the sense of 'no longer seeming than you are'.