Mudun مدن Urban Cultures in Transit

13 May 2017 – 20 Aug 2017

Event times

Daily 10am - 6pm

Cost of entry

10,00 € per person

Vitra Design Museum

Weil Am Rhein, Germany


Travel Information

  • Vollbild Weil am Rhein, Vitra??

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The exhibition »Mudun مدن Urban Cultures in Transit« reveals the metropolises of the Middle East and North Africa regions from a micropore perspective: it tells of the architecture, the city quarters and the protagonists that shape it.


Using contemporary photographs, models and texts, she presents the dynamics and atmosphere of individual places and the relationship of people to their spatial environment. The project is a collaboration of the Vitra Design Museum with the editors of Brownbook from Dubai. 

What is the significance of the architectural heritage of the 20th century? Century? And where did political conditions shape the urban fabric? What intercultural identities arise in the diaspora? These questions are at the center of the exhibition. "Mudun مدن Urban Cultures in Transit" explores contemporary urban culture in the MENA region, an area whose metropoles offer space for critical debates, subcultures and artistic avant-garde. This is illustrated by examples from the Middle East and North Africa. These include architectural models, photographs and short texts. The architectural heritage of modernity, the present situation in the metropolitan centers and the stories of people in the diaspora, make it possible to experience how urban spaces shape cultural identity. 

In three subject areas - »Architecture«, »Places« and »Societies« - the exhibition portrays buildings, City district and people. The "Architecture" section comprises ten Xeina Malki fired clay models. The architect Fatma Al-Sehlawi chose public buildings from the period 1960 to today. These include the Queen Alia International Airport in Amman, the Tehran Museum of Contemporary Art and the Baghdad Gymnasium, designed by Le Corbusier. At the time of their formation, they were used as symbols of identity - for a community or for the whole state. The models are framed by contemporary photographs. Curator Mohammed Elshaded designed large-format collages for »Places« to illustrate ten cities. They are supplemented by texts and plans from the cities of Ankara, Birzeit, Tripoli, Rosetta, Baghdad, Damascus, Khartoum, Tangier, Teheran and Sharjah. In the "Societies" section, author Amira Asad portrays people from the MENA region who live in the diaspora: Kurdish communities in the USA. Yemeni in Singapore or Tunisian in Paris. In ten picture, text and sound collages and two projections, urban communities or protagonists give insights into their intercultural life and the urban spaces they have helped shape. 

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Janna Lipsky


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