Mathematical Concepts and Computer Graphics for the Reconstruction of
Stalactite Vaults - Muqarnas - in Islamic Architecture
There are a lot of ground plans of existing Muqarnas. Some of these
3D-vaults are still in good shape, others broke down and have to be
reconstructed from their plans. However, in many cases even such plans
do not exist any more.
First we want to convert existing muqarnas plans into the
computer in such a way that we can analyze their properties: What kind of
elements occur, which elements can be connected and how, what are the
possible heights of the succeeding tiers, what about regional
differences, cultural differences, differences in time?
We aim at a computer program
that is able to answer these questions on muqarnas plans automatically.
The obvious material to start with are the Illkhanid muqarnas plans in
Ulrich Harb's book. These can be compared with existing architecture and
thus show limitations in computer possibilities.
In the second stage we want to apply these methods to plans which are
known to have not been realized, the Topkapi Scroll being our first choice;
and we want to apply these methods in reconstructing muqarnas vaults to
ruins like Varamin, Iran.
It is also planned to produce several 15 min. videos on muqarnas to be
used for teaching.
Professor Dr. Gülrü Necipoglu
Aga Khan Chair for the History of Architecture, Harvard
Cambridge, MA, USA
Professor Dr. Mohammad Al-Assad
Director of the
Center for the Study of the Built Environment
Amman 11183, Jordan
Dr. Jan P. Hogendijk
University of Utrecht
PO-Box 80 010
3508 TA Utrecht, NL
We are very sorry to hear about the unexpected death of our
cooperation partner Professor
Alpay Özdural as a result of a heart attack on 22 February 2003.
His invitation to Heidelberg was planned for May 2004.
Professor Dr. Alpay Özdural
Eastern Mediterranean University, Gazy Magusa
Faculty of Architecture
Mersin 10, North Cyprus, Turkey