Posts tagged with "Tehran":

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Tehran's Next Office designs a house that swivels in and out on enormous turntables

Sharifi-Ha House, designed by Tehran-based firm Next Office, comprises three pods on turntables to respond to changing seasons and functions. German turntable manufacturer, Bumat, modeled the technology after its industry-leading platforms for theater sets and car exhibitions. The architecture firm explained, "The sensational, spatial qualities of the interiors, as well as the formal configuration of its exterior, directly respond to the displacement of turning boxes that lead the building volume to become open or closed, obtaining introverted or extroverted character." Each pod has a different function: breakfast room on the first level, guest room on the second, and a home office on the third. The floors are then divided into "front and back" with a void in the center, ensuring natural light floods the house, even when the front rooms are turned closed. Bridges and internal balconies line the central void to create views between rooms and floors. The ground level has a 10 foot setback for a shallow, glass-bottomed pool, which floods the basement with natural light. The two basement levels include a gym, pool, and sauna. The firm described, "Public activities all happen on the first and second floors, and the family’s private life takes place on the third and fourth floors," where bedrooms and bathrooms are arranged around a living room. The project title, "Sharifi-Ha House," translates to "Sharif's family," named after the clients. Alireza Taghaboni, CEO of Next Office, explained, "This kind of naming is used for old Iranian mansions which had summer rooms and winter rooms. As we thought our project as the modern version of these, we named the house this way."
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Moussavi the Architect

I first remembered reading about it in The Economist, arching an impressed eyebrow, and then forgetting about it. After all, this was before the Iranian elections had even taken place, let alone led the country into its current near-revolt. But there, at the heart of it all, was an architect. Today, Archinect reminded us of Mir Hussein Moussavi's pre-political profession, including a link to some of his work, which we've included here. According to the Times:
After stepping down [as prime minister] in 1989, Mr. Moussavi kept a hand in politics, serving on Iran’s Expediency Council. But most of his time was devoted to architecture and painting. His chief influences include the Italian architect Renzo Piano, said a close relative. “He takes some elements of modern Japanese architecture, and American postmodern, and then puts them in the context of Iranian architecture,” the relative said.
The Financial Times reports that Moussavi "graduated in architecture from Tehran and Shahid Beheshti universities." According to Wikipedia, he received his BA from the former school in 1969, though Iran Tracker says that is the year he received his MA. Prior to the election, the Washington Post described him as "a worldly intellectual who is not hungry for power but who thinks that Iran's bad economy and international isolation require him to try to effect change." In its report, the Times says of Moussavi's political ascent, "Mr. Moussavi began his political career as a hard-liner and a favorite of the revolution’s architect, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini." The term, as far as we can tell, is used figuratively. Perhaps a mistake, given that the larger story is actually about a real, practicing architect. Or, it could speak to the true power architects hold. After all, Moussavi is not the first (major) politician to serve time at a drawing board first.