Concert Hall Aachen
Clemenc Sels Museum
Royal Theater - Copenhagen
Kunsthalle Bremen
Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien
Max Ernst Geburtshaus
Central Mosque Cologne


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Central Mosque

Project status: preliminary design 2005
Client: DITIB
Team: smo architektur
Location: Cologne, Germany
Area: 8000 m2
Cost: 24000000.00 €


FAZ Feuilleton, „Mit den Türmen siegt die Tradition“ 13. August 2007

Die neuen Moscheen des Abendlandes
Author: Christian Welzbacher
Publisher's: SUN 2008
ISBN: 978 90 8506 638 5
Baunetz Buchvorstellung und Diskussion in Berlin vom 15.09.2009


BDA Domforum 2003
Berlin „Moscheen in Deutschland“ in der Buchhandlung König 2009

In Islamic art the expression of believe is high pointed in architecture and calligraphy.
Works of art belong to the category of wonderful things, the so-called “adjaib”. The piece of art is supposed to establish astonishment and admiration. The term “adjib” means wonderful, astonishing and is still used today to praise works of art. The Koran explains this attitude in sure 27, vers 45. Here is talk of a “sarh”, a room made of glass or crystal. Salomo, the king and prophet, who was famous for his art sponsoring establishment, had this room build to test the queen of Saba and prove his superiority. When the queen saw this building she thought it was water. This room was build to create an illusion and fill spectators with astonishment.
(excerpt of the lecture “about building mosques”, 2003, S.M.Oreyzi)

The presented design is the result of a study lasting since 2003, with the aim of finding a new typology for the building of mosques in our digital age. A typology involving modern materials and present-day constructions. Starting with the house of prophet Muhammad mosques of different times and regions were looked at in reference to their architectural concepts.
The archetypes, the field-mosque (Arabian region), the four-Iwanen-mosque (Persian region) and the central-dome-type (Turkish region), serve as an example for all mosques in the world since 600 years.

We have developed an new type of mosque, that is a fusion between the classical dome and the minaret. This creates an architectural joint between prayer room and heaven.
The high rising figure as a landmark emphasizes the importance of the building and is comparable to sacred gothic architecture which reaches the sky with its high towers.
The flowing form and structure of the figure is derived from Islamic calligraphy. The translucent skin in green (colour of the Islam) is the systematic continuation of the islamic building tradition and it is in reference to sure 27, vers 45 from the Koran. The central theme in the prayer hall is daylight. Light is the foundation pillar of Islamic architecture. It creates a unique scenario of the interior.

The design contains all typical attributes of the classical mosque. The prayer room is directed to Mecca by the gebla-wall. A gallery divides the male from the female prayers. The hall generously opens to the courtyard, that gives space for the Friday-prayers. A sheet of water allows ritual washing.

This mosque is a prototype that can be adapted to different urban and functional situations while its characteristic typology is kept.