Design Concepts in Alien Context Analyzing Foreign Architects’ Works in Persian Gulf States from the Perspective of Regionalism



The interaction between Architecture and culture, defined in human and built-environment relationships, challenges both theoretical and practical fields of architecture. To have an affective confrontation to this challenge, it is more important to re-define both sides of this interaction, culture and architecture. Cultural context should represent in architecture. There are some movements in the world that support sustainable cultural identity instead of modern standardization. Architects, confront to alien cultural contexts from the perspective of regionalism. The purpose of this article is to provide a basic knowledge which analyses this relationship. Regionalism is an important cultural approach because of consisting many challenges and antitheses which are basis of multi-globalization viewpoint. Multi- globalization accepts cultural diversity and considers particular regional way of confronting globalization in opposite to dogmatic approaches which interpret globalization as product of western imperialism. Regionalism and architectural identity are topical issues these days and while it seems crucial to pay enough attention to their meanings, it is also needed to consider their perspectives and limits of action in a changing world full of divers’ exchanges and discoveries. The main question of this article is which architectural concepts could guaranty the desirability of non- local architects’ works to presence of other design productive (client, user, legislator). Analyzing expert Architects’ works in cultural special context like Islamic countries of Persian Gulf states, clears that there are seven design oriented keywords that could be organized as basic concepts of design. Namely: modern technology representation, metaphoric formal design, active adaptation with climate, attention to site characteristics, attention to Islamic architecture’s principals, using local details, materials and motives and inspiration of regional specific concepts. These keywords examined in sixteen famous projects in pointed region as a subscription point of regionalism and architectural experiences in alien context. The research method is case study. Just as traditionalism is a reaction against loss of continuity, so regionalism is a restorative philosophy in favor of supposed spatial harmony between people, their artifacts, mores and customs, and ultimately through nature. The results of study show that technically metaphoric expression of local shapes is the main pragmatically method of architectural design. Also in prosperous examples, interaction between architect and design context is more important. To link with new world, Technology should create social infrastructures in these contexts in addition to experience formally. The results focus on this reality that we have to re-consider the real pattern of potential of our country for reaching expressive translations of abstract essential meanings of what an appropriated culture-linked form can be. The endeavor, which is certainly, an urgent contextual essential philosophy of pattern/design, can be revealed through commitments and profound researches of inner deeper layered zones of structures and languages in search for certain core universality. A critical re-examination of the present situation in reflecting types of architecture referring to climate, patterns of use, structure, and the abstraction of devices issued from some metaphysical tradition can lead to create precedents of design where a touched wisdom is foreseen and still visible through the architectural heritage.