Current Exhibitions

February 22 - May 5, 2012

City of Mirages: Baghdad, 1952-1982

The history of modern architecture in Baghdad has been relatively underexplored and is still not well known. Though specialists in Iraq, and in exile throughout the world, have already undertaken detailed analyses of the topic, many of these studies have been difficult to access throughout Europe and the United States. The destruction of war has also made it impossible to revocer the complete modernist record of Iraq. While it is not the definitive work on the subject, City of Mirages tells a story about Baghdad and the architects who were invited to participate in the making of its modern image--a story that is vanishing, and whose last witnesses and participants disappear day by day.

Read the press release here

Curator: Pedro Azara
Exhibition Design: Rumors

Special thanks to the exhibition's Advisory Committee.

City of Mirages: Baghdad, 1952-1982  was organized by Col•legi d'Arquitectes de Catalunya in Barcelona.

The US debut of City of Mirages: Baghdad, 1952-1982 at the Center for Architecture in New York is presented by the AIA New York Chapter and the Center for Architecture Foundation, and made possible by 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

LIVE FEED: Middle East Collaborations 2005-2012
Wednesday, February 29, 2012, 6-8pm

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

Guided Exhibition Tour @theCenter
Wednesday, March 14, 2012, 6-7:30pm

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

back to exhibitions list

Venturi, Rauch, Scott Brown. Project for the Competition for the National Mosque of Baghdad, 1982
Walter Gropius, TAC (The Architects

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