The site under consideration is an old mosque named Dara Shikoh’s Mosque. The mosque has a Sufi history to it, and is named after the Sufi saint – Shaikh Muhibullah Allahabadi, and contains important Sufi scriptures and books dating back upto three centuries.
Participant Name: Sameedha Mahajan
University: KRVIA, Mumbai
The project acts a small annexe to the existing mosque, with minimum interference to the old structure. Functionally, it accommodates an amphitheatre for Sufi performances, a study and reading space, a library, and spaces for practicing and showcasing Sufi art and music. The curved wall with arches acts as a welcome gesture and invites people into the building. One of the arches acts as a formal entrance to the mosque, framing its view for the visitors.
The material imagined for the building is rammed earth and brick masonry, which would go well with the traditional fabric of the site, as well as respond well to the hot climate of the city of Allahabad. The use of brick jalis, heavy walls, courtyards and a minaret are an attempt to respond to the strong Mughal architecture of the old city and the mosque.
The project is an attempt to revive the importance of the mosque, which is gradually being forgotten by the local community. By accommodating programs known to the local community, the mosque will both be used, as well as enlighten people about the rich cultural and Sufi history of the region.