The exhibition is the second chapter in the series “Architecture, Culture and Identity” – and is a successor to the exhibition NEW NORDIC, which Louisiana showed in 2012. The series is about how architecture is both a bearer of identity and promotes the shaping of the cultural distinctiveness of a country or a region. CONTEMPORARY ARAB traces some of the common lines for consideration in a region with a shared understanding of space and a visual culture where one can draw lines from calligraphy over certain construction elements to architecture on the very grand scale.
Henning Larsen will display its works in a separate room, focusing on the company’s work with the public space in an Arab context. The exhibition will feature an installation that plays with daylight, inspired by the company’s Middle-Eastern projects, whose designs closely relate to the local context – society, history, culture and climate. The exhibition space will feature examples of the initial sketches and analyses of selected projects from the past decades. Henning Larsen Architects’ work in the Middle East started with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, completed in 1984 – most recently followed by King Abdullah Financial District in the city in which the first buildings will be inaugurated in 2014. Both master plan and a number of the iconic buildings within the plan are designed by Henning Larsen Architects.
CONTEMPORARY ARAB is a cross-over exhibition that mixes architecture, art, photography, documentary and film. The exhibition takes the audience to both old Yemenite civilizations and new architectural projects that relate to the desert as a place.