Calendar of Events

Tue 05.01.2012

Architecture in Baghdad, Then and Now


When: 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM TUESDAY, MAY 1

Where: At The Center   

Rescheduled to May 1st from April 26th.

A lecture by Dr. Ghada Al slik, Professor, Department of Architecture, College of Engineering, University of Baghdad, followed by a panel discussion with Iraqi architect Hisham Munir, and Janon Kadhim, Ph.D. , Assoc. AIA, Associate Professor of Architecture and Architectural History and Heritage, formerly of the University of Baghdad.

Ms. Al slik, a research scholar for the exhibition City of Mirages: Baghdad, 1952-1982, will present the history of Baghdad from its establishment as a round city in 762-766AD to the establishment of the modern state of Iraq in the early 20th century to the present. She will show the unique architectural styles of Baghdad over time: the 30s, when local architecture met the classic and art deco styles of European influence to form a unique style; the 50s, when masters of Modern architecture designed with the cultural atmosphere of modernity; the 60s and 70s, when contemporary Iraqi architecture linked to the historical and local past; and the 80s, when big urban projects were undertaken. Her lecture will conclude with projects to the present day.

Professor Janon Kadhim will highlight the role of pioneering Iraqi architects of the modern period, including the work of Mr. Hisham Munir, who will relate his experience as architect of the University of Baghdad with Walter Gropius.

Photo: Hisham Munir, Walter Gropius, and the TAC team at the University of Baghdad project site (courtesy Hisham Munir & Associates)

Ghada Musa Rzouki Al slik, PhD, is a Professor of the theory of architecture and architectural preservation in the Department of Architecture, College of Engineering, at the University of Baghdad. She is a member of the higher committee of the basic design of the city of Baghdad, Mayoralty of Baghdad. She is a Consultant for the mayoralty of Baghdad and the ministry of municipalities, and directorate of physical planning for the projects of the urban renewal of old districts. Dr. Al slik is author of the book City of Stories on the history of Baghdad architecture. She has researched extensively on topics of heritage preservation, philosophy of design and architecture, and she has professionally designed several projects in Baghdad.

Hisham Munir is one of the leading architects in the Arab/Persian Gulf region and a pioneer in Iraqi Contemporary Architecture. His firm, Hisham Munir and Associates completed over 90 large scale commercial projects in the fields of: Health and Medical complexes (government and private health centers and hospitals), Cultural and Educational facilities (Schools, Colleges and Universities), Government and Administrative complexes (Ministries and Departments), Professional Organizations Headquarters, Hotels (government and private), Airport Hangers, Banks, and Housing and Urban Design. He also completed over 150 private residences. Mr. Munir and his firm have won the highest number of first prize awards in the competitions they participated: 14 First prize, and 4 second prize out of 18 competitions entered. His work has been published in numerous local and international publications. His experience of over fifty years has covered all regions of Iraq north, middle and south, and the Arab/Persian Gulf. He has successfully collaborated, associated and joint-ventured with various international firms: American, British, Brazilian, Canadian, Dutch, Italian and Swiss. Mr. Munir is a noted academic. He is one of the original founders and creators of the School of Architecture in The University of Baghdad. He served as member of faculty and Dean of the School. Mr. Munir earned his Bachelors of Architecture from the University of Texas in Austin (UT Austin), and completed his post-graduate work at the University of Southern California (USC).

Janon A.W. Kadhim, PhD, Assoc. AIA. Is an Associate Professor of Architecture, Architectural History and Historic Preservation. Born in Kansas, raised and educated in Iraq, presently residing in Sacramento, CA, she holds a BS in Architecture, MS in Historic Preservation and PhD in Architectural History. She worked as an Associate Professor of Architecture at the Dept. of Architecture, University of Baghdad, Iraq until late 2004. Since 2005 she has taught at Al-Ahliyya Amman University in Jordan, Chaired the Dept. of Interior Architecture at Prince Muhammad Bin Fahd University in Saudi Arabia, worked as an Adjunct Professor teaching Modern Architecture and California Architecture and Urban History at the dept. of Art, CSUS (California State University, Sacramento), and currently works at her co-founded company “Green Horizons.” In Baghdad, in addition to working at the Dept. of Architecture, she also worked as a consultant to the Municipality of Baghdad, the Heritage Dept., working on consultant teams with the Municipality of Baghdad, the Directorate of Antiquities and the University of Baghdad. These teams addressed the issues of conservation and preservation in the Historic Sector of Baghdad, which is also the main topic of much of her research work. She is the author of “The Dialectic of Continuity in Iraqi Architecture” and is presently working on her new book “Mesopotamia the Cradle of Civilization.”

Cost: free for AIA members and students; $10 for non-members.

Organized by the Center for Architecture.

A program of the exhibitions Change: Architecture and Engineering in the Middle East, 2000-Present and City of Mirages: Baghdad, 1952-1982 on view at the Center for Architecture.

The presentation of these exhibitions at the Center for Architecture is made possible through the generous support of the following sponsors:


Lead Sponsor:

Eytan Kaufman Design and Development

Columbia University, Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation
Dewan Architects & Engineers
Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates
NAGA Architects
Ramla Benaissa Architects
RBSD Architects
Skidmore, Owings & Merrill
World Monuments Fund


Opening Reception
Wednesday, February 22, 2012, 6-9pm

Change in the Middle East: Preserving the Past, Inventing the Future
Saturday, February 25, 2012, 11am-5pm

Culture and Climate: Contemporary Architectural Responses in the Middle East
Thursday, March 1, 2012, 6-8pm

Iraqi Culture Pre- and Post- Invasion: From Secular to Sectarian
Thursday, March 15, 2012, 6-8pm

Building ANew: Noor Theatre Presents A Reading of Short Plays by Award-Winning Middle Eastern Playwrights
Friday, March 16, 2012, 7pm

Faster and Bigger: Building in the Middle East
Monday, April 2, 2012, 6-8pm

FamilyDay@theCenter: New Architecture in the Middle East
Saturday, April 14, 11:00 AM – 1:00 PM or 2:00 PM – 4:00 PM

Architecture in Baghdad, Then and Now
Tuesday, May 1, 2012, 6-8pm

Guided Exhibition Tour of CHANGE and City of Mirages
Friday, May 4, 2012, 12-1pm

The National Mosque of Baghdad Competition: A Conversation Between Denise Scott Brown, Renata Holod and Frederic Schwartz
Friday, May 4, 2012, 6-8pm

Practice in the Middle East
Tuesday, May 8, 2012, 8-9:30am

Fridays throughout the exhibition duration starting at 6:30pm
February 24, 2012: About Baghdad (2004) - Q&A with Iraqi poet and writer Sinan Antoon and Pedro Azara, curator of Baghdad, 1952-1982
March 2, 2012: Nice Bombs (2006)
March 9, 2012: Son of Babylon (2010)
March 23, 2012: Daily Baghdad (2004)
April 13, 2012: 16 Hours in Baghdad (2004) - Q&A with Iraqi actor Abbas Noori Abbood

Exploring the Built Environment: Architecture in the Middle East
Free Gallery Program for School Groups (Grades K-12)
Available select Mondays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays from March - May 2012


Sorry, this event is sold out.

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