Press Release:
Adrian Lahoud appointed curator of the inaugural Sharjah Architecture Triennial

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Adrian Lahoud, Curator of the first Sharjah Architecture Triennial, © Rabee Younes

Sharjah Architecture Triennial announces the appointment of Adrian Lahoud, Dean of the School of Architecture at the Royal College of Art, as curator of the first edition.  Taking place in November 2019 in the Emirate of Sharjah, the Triennial is the first major platform to invite dialogue on architecture and urbanism in the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia.

Lahoud is an internationally recognised architect, urban designer, and researcher.  He has written and lectured extensively on urban spatial forms and large scale environmental change with a focus on the Arab world and Africa.

He was Studio Master in the Projective Cities Master of Philosophy in Architecture and Urban Design Program at the Architectural Association London. Prior to that he was Director of the MA program in Research Architecture and a Research Fellow in the Forensic Architecture ERC project at Goldsmiths, University of London.

Key works include ‘Climate Crimes’ at ‘The Future Starts Here’, V&A Museum, ‘Floating Bodies’ at ‘Forensis: The Architecture of Public Truth’, Haus der Kulturen der Welt Berlin and ‘Fallen Cities: Architecture and Reconstruction’ in ‘The Arab City: Architecture and Representation’.

Khalid Al Qasimi, Chairman of Sharjah Architecture Triennial, commented:

“The Board of Directors of Sharjah Architecture Triennial and I are all very pleased that Adrian Lahoud will be curating our first edition. His deep commitment to addressing challenging global questions, cross-disciplinary perspective, and nuanced understanding of the MENASA urban context makes him the right choice for us amongst several other impressive candidates. We are confident that he will make an important contribution to the Triennial’s mission to reframe the conversation on regional architecture and urbanism.“

Adrian Lahoud commented: “I am thrilled to be given the opportunity to shape the inaugural edition of the Sharjah Architecture Triennial and to find ways of supporting an emerging generation of architects, artists and scholars in the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia.”

Sharjah Architecture Triennial is founded by Khalid Al Qasimi, Chairman of Sharjah Urban Planning Council, and is set to reframe on-going conversations about the built environment of this diverse region by addressing its social, economic, environmental and cultural context. In the lead-up to its first edition which will take place in November 2019 the Sharjah Architecture Triennial will convene a series of public programmes including talks, conferences and symposia.


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Notes to Editors

Sharjah Architecture Triennial is a non-profit initiative legally housed under the Sharjah Urban Planning Council and funded by Government of Sharjah. Founding Partners include Sharjah Urban Planning Council; Directorate of Town Planning and Survey; American University of Sharjah, College of Architecture, Art & Design; Sharjah Art Foundation; and Bee’ah (the UAE’s leading integrated environmental & waste management company).

Each edition will be led by a curator who spearheads a core programme of exhibitions, urban interventions, conferences and public talks with the participation of local, regional and international practitioners and researchers.

Twitter: @sharjaharch; Instagram: @sharjaharchitecture; Facebook: @sharjaharchitecture

Khalid Al Qasimi

Khalid bin Sultan Al Qasimi is Chairman of Sharjah Urban Planning Council and the Sharjah Architecture Triennial. Drawing on his academic background in architecture and design at the Architectural Association and Central Saint Martins in London, Al Qasimi oversees integrated inter-governmental efforts to introduce a new vitality into Sharjah’s urban development. Under his leadership, Sharjah Urban Planning Council ensures that Sharjah and its residents have access to a future with sustainable economic growth and social wellbeing. Building on this foundation, the Sharjah Architecture Triennial serves as the first major platform to address critical reflection on the architecture and urbanism in the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia region, placing Sharjah’s development in dialogue with the wider region.

Adrian Lahoud

Drawing on nation building projects in the post-colonial period and the mobilisation of climate research by the global south, Lahoud’s PhD titled The Problem of Scale: The City, the Territory, the Planetarysets out a theory of scale drawn from architectural practice in the context of emancipatory struggles. Further recent exhibits include: The Shape of the Eclipseat Let’s Talk about the Weather: Art and Ecology in a Time of Crisis, Sursock Museum Beirut, Secular Cosmologiesin After Belonging: Triennial of Architecture Oslo. Recent lectures include: Architecture and the Social Imaginationat City Debates, American University of Beirut, Fallen Cities: Architecture and Reconstructionat The Arab City: Architecture and Representation, Columbia University, and Floating Bodies at Conflict Shorelines Princeton University. Recent publications include: The Mediterranean: A New Imaginaryin New Geographies, Harvard University Press, The Bodele Declarationin Grain, Vapour, Ray: Textures of the Anthropocene MIT Press, Nomos and Cosmosin Supercommunity, MIT Press.

Key design projects include a competition entry for a cultural centre in Istanbul and a proposal exploring forms of co-existence between high-density development and historically significant inner city areas in Tripoli.

He is currently acting President of the Jury for the Saradar Collection Architectural Competition in Lebanon and working on a large installation titled ‘Climate Crimes’ to be included in the Future Starts Here exhibition at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London in May 2018.