Embassy of Egypt
Tunis, Tunisia

Balancing technical and symbolic aspects is crucial when designing a building that embodies a nation. Having reflected on hybridisation in the cultures of Muslim countries and on Kenneth Frampton’s notion of critical regionalism - with ontological and representational dimensions respectively relating to materials choices and poetic possibilities - the architects settled on the Pharaonic and Arab-Islamic registers. The whole is conceived as a monumental enclosure flanked by four towers, with central courtyard serving as an outdoor reception space. The Consulate opens onto one major thoroughfare, the Embassy onto another, ensuring functional independence. All materials and techniques are local (Tunisian), as was the workforce. Walls are clad in two types of Kadhal marble (grey, fossiliferous and beige, veined), highlighting Pharaonic architecture’s stereotomy. Handmade ceramic tiles offer a geometric representation of the flowing Nile. Light-filtering, privacy-enhancing "mashrabiyas", and canopies that crown the building, are of steel. Doors are oak, some with carved Pharaonic motifs.

Source: Aga Khan Trust for Culture

Tunis, Tunisia
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Completed 2020
4,161 m²
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