• Arch. Habibeh Madjdabadi

    Guest Speaker Habibeh Madjdabadi Architecture Office

    Arch. Habibeh Madjdabadi

    Guest Speaker Habibeh Madjdabadi Architecture Office



    Principal Architect (office owner) Habibeh Madjdabadi Architecture Office, Iran


    Poetics of Shadow and Light, (Building Skin in Iranian Architecture)
    40 Knots House
    Shortlisted –Aga Khan Award 2016
    Shortlisted -World Wide Brick Award 2014
    3rd Place – MEMAR Award 2014 / National

    While persian carpets are world renowned, bricks have a strong relationship with Iranian historical architecture. in this building, ‘the house of 40 knots’ by habibeh madjdabadi and alireza mashhadimirza, the two entities are fused into a contemporary façade that appears as a collection of intricately interwoven modules. in textile factories, two people work together to make a carpet – one reads the instructions while the other sits behind the scaffold and makes the braids. the architects elaborate by saying, ‘the one who reads the instruction does not necessarily know how to knit. she reads the instructions, usually with a rhythm, and like a song: two reds, a yellow below, two blue . . . those instructions are usually drawn on checkered papers.’ the handmade exterior of this residence is also made using a similar system. one craftsman reads and the other places raised, filler, and hollow bricks in corresponding supporting bars between L profiles. due to this technique, there is no need for phase drawings and the construction sequence can be performed through a series of simple, localized labors. workers can lay down the clay blocks row by row without having to understand the concept of whole façade
    as the result is thought to be one unified object, madjdabadi and mashhadimirza intentionally avoided designing different components separately. instead, the aesthetic is defined by a series of loose rules that allow both sides of the repeated units to be visible. from the outside, they appear as an integrated texture, and from the inside, they appear as window parapets embedded into the masonry. also, a standard cube geometry is used at various scales: in the protrusions of the outer surface, in planters of the fencing, and in shelves of the interior.


    Shortlisted –Aga Khan Award 2016 (for 40 Knots House )/ International
    Shortlisted -World Wide Brick Award 2014 (for 40 Knots House )/International
    Winner – Chicago Award 2014 (for Mellat Bank )/International
    3rd Place – MEMAR Award 2014 / National


    Habibeh Madjdabadi, born in 1977, is one of the outstanding architects of younger generation in Iran with almost 15 years of professional experience. Her work has been recognized and awarded and has widely been reviewed by the local and international media. Her artistic exploration goes beyond architecture and she is making her mark in conceptual art and design. Her realizations reveal a meticulous and continuous research about the new possibilities of using contemporary artistic approach and techniques in a local context.
    She established her design office in 2000 after winning first prize in a design competition for restoring historical buildings in Iran. She has received several awards and recognitions among which shortlisted at “Aga Khan Award 2016 and “Worldwide Brick Award 2014” and “MEMAR Award 2014” for “House of 40 knots” and ”Chicago Award 2014” for “MELLAT Bank’s” cooper façade.
    She is recently working on the design of Norwegian Embassy in Tehran Collaborating with Intertecno(an Italian engineering company) Materials are an important means of expression in Madjdabadi’s work and she considers them from a poetic point of view.
    Madjdabadi is also recognized by her articles of architecture and design appeared in Iranian architecture magazines and she is collaborating with Memar Magazine as a member of the editorial board.