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Su_Per_form®: A project on the coastal mountains of Oman

Part 2 Project 2010
Aezad Muzaffar
American University of Sharjah, UAE
The aim of this project was to explore the flexibility and transformation of space in elation to habitation and environmental changes of a remote site. Set in the mountains of the coastal region of Dibba, Oman, the project interacts specifically with the area’s solar cycle and transforms the structure to different configurations and resultant different spaces. The rough terrains of Dibba offer isolated and undisturbed landscape, where the potential of an adaptive theater can be expressed.

The proposal evolved from analysis and mapping of the relationship between dependent and independent variables, through an event and performance device. Where any change in the parameters of independent variable, inadvertently affects the nature of the dependent variable. The result of interplay between the two variables generates distinct light and shadow compositions.

The program of an open-air theater, then germinates from the systematization of these variables where the architectural form begins to imitate the dependent variable and the local environment condition; namely the sun’s angle assuming the role of independent variable. The complexity of the ever-evolving form compliments the extreme vertical site of Dibba, as the theater projects from one cliff to another, creating a vertical shaft of molded sunlight. Instigated by the solar cycle and the transfiguring structures, this drama of light and shadow is delineated by the progressive luminous patterns on the suspended stage.

The design was derived from a rigorous fabrication process, and digital modeling were incorporated to accurately modulate the movement of multifaceted planar structures in response to the moving light source.

The consequence reveals two performances - the stage production and the spectacle of an active architectural form.

Aezad Muzaffar

In his proposal ‘Su_Per_form®: A project on the coastal mountains of Oman', Aezad Muzaffar develops a landscape project as a theatre for a remote site located at Dibba in the Sultanate of Oman in the Gulf region.

Aezad, in the early stages of his project develops a series of physical models and three-dimensional diagrams that depict synchronised movement of light, structure and human experience. These studies develop to more complex digital simulations. The land formation in his project is the inspiration for the concept. The project proposes a structure than a building as a theatre and performance space that is ‘hidden’ within a natural valley. It has a minimum footprint yet it captures amazing panoramic views of this coast. The programme of performance, stage sets and props is treated like a ‘changing landscape’.

The project challenges current notions of commercial developments in the region and questions the practice of architecture of such coastal interventions and remote settlements along this coast of Oman. Aezad proposes an alternative approach of environmentally responsive tectonics by adopting an appropriate scale as interfaces between the landscape and the human participation.

Aezad is a talented and thoughtful student and an inventor who engages in his design process by analyzing and responding to site and specific conditions and he uses these as tools for the design of architectural spaces.

George Katodrytis, RIBA


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