In Brief

Dutch architecture firm Mecanoo has proposed a complex in Madinah that is inspired by Arabic calligraphy and the Qur'an.

The Noble Qur’an Oasis competition was an architectural competition to design a complex in the Madinah region of Saudi Arabia. The designs entered by Dutch architecture firm Mecanoo envisaged a series of interconnected buildings that, when viewed from a bird’s eye view, makes up an abstract interpretation of Arabic calligraphy.

Mecanoo reinterpreted the formal calligraphy of Arabic into interlocking, fluid buildings that create a plethora of public and private spaces. As well as being inspired by calligraphy, the design took inspiration from the Qur’an – the holy book of Islam after which the center is named. The proposal states that the following passage was Mecanoo’s starting point:

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