year 4, Issue 1 (Spring & Summer 2018)                   CIAUJ 2018, 4(1): 69-83 | Back to browse issues page

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Noghrehkar S, Zarei Hajiabadi F, Mohammad-Ganji F, Danaeinia A. Reading Iranian Architecture: In Search of a Comprehensive Model for Understanding the History of Iranian Architecture . CIAUJ. 2018; 4 (1) :69-83
1- Shahid Rajaee Teacher Training University ,
2- Bu-Ali Sina University
3- University of Kashan
Abstract:   (180 Views)
Understanding the invaluable history of Iranian archi­tecture and utilizing its sustainable bases, principles and patterns can help us improve architecture both in the present and in the future. To understand Ira­nian architecture, it is essential that we can read it thoroughly and correctly; but before that, we need to have a comprehensive definition of it. So, the main question of this research is: How should we read Ira­nian architecture? And that question gives rise to two more questions: What is Iranian architecture? And why should we read it? To answer these questions, we first surveyed experts (in two groups: researchers and designers) for their viewpoints on Iranian archi­tecture. The collected data were analyzed, catego­rized and codified in three groups: the definition, the necessity and the method of reading architecture. The findings are presented below as based on the three research questions:
  1. What is Iranian architecture?

The resulting data were coded into five categories: architect, goal, material, form and context. In this step, based on the codes, we adapted Aristotle’s the­ory of the “four causes of being” to develop a concep­tual model of architecture including its four causes (material, formal, efficient and final) and its different types of contexts (natural, social and formal/physical). This model is aimed at finding an answer to the ques­tion “What is Iranian architecture?” and serves as a framework for the other two questions. 
  1. Why should we read the history of Iranian architecture?
The collected data about the necessity of reading architecture were coded into three categories: ex­tracting the principles, exploring the patterns and uti­lizing those principles and patterns in contemporary architecture.
  1. How should we read Iranian architecture?
By answering the previous two questions, we have approached the answer to the third question. Identi­fying the goals of reading and the relevant factors will guide us in reading architecture. To reach a practical method for reading architecture, we have drawn on our experiences in teaching university courses in ar­chitectural history as well as student activities. We will propose a five-stage reading process (description, analysis, criticism, instruction and practice) and three stages of reading (before, during and after visiting a building). Finally, we will present a checklist of the necessary activities for reading Iranian architecture and lay out the results of using the proposed reading method in five areas of architecture including educa­tion, research, production, media and policy-making.
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