The Query Letter

The indigenous (or traditional or the clay ) architecture (the m'amaariy-e sonn-nati ) in Iran has a long history and may be traced back to the Sumerian time, about 7000 to 5000 years ago (c. 5000 B.C.). This method of architecture is about to extinct because of a rapid urbanization and modernization in Iran from about 1940's up to the present time.

The historic cities of Iran, therefore, are representing two styles of architecture: 1) the indigenous (or traditional or clay) architecture backed by centuries of experience and performed by builders with no or little secular education, and 2) a modern architecture backed by educated people with no or little experience. As an example, while a ceiling by the use of brick and clay that is constructed by a traditional builder has lasted several centuries (and in some cases about 1000 years), a roof in a modern apartment after 10 or 20 years may fall apart.

For this reason, main features (or characteristics) of the indigenous architecture of Iran are both unique and worth recording before they are wiped out completely in the modernization process. Famous historic cities of Iran, in which a rich architectural heritages (or the indigenous architecture) are still alive have been selected for recording the main features (characteristics/ forms/ examples/ style/ genre) of the indigenous (or the traditional or the clay) architecture pictorially. These cities are mostly founded from the 500 B.C. up to about the A.D. 900 or A.D. 10th century.

The architectural features in the historic cities of Iran include: the heritage houses, the traditional wooden doors of the heritage houses with two knockers in each door ( --one, a knocker for men and another a knocker for women), the koochehes (a maze of narrow alleyways bordered by tall, clay walls of the heritage or traditionally-built houses), the dome-like roofs and arches by clay that form the traditional structure of the historic cities of Iran, the wind-catching tower (the baadgeir ), the ground water reservoir (the aab-anbaar ),the maj-moo'ah (a complex or a group), baazaar, the decorative tiles and tile-works, the moqarnass (muqarnas ) geometry, the caravansaries, castles and many more (introduction of the books).

The works, therefore, are pictorial presentations of main features of the indigenous (or the clay) architecture in the historic cities of Iran.

The final works are 40+ volumes about the indigenous architecture of Iran which are grouped into 3 main categories:

Group 1) Main Features of the Indigenous Architecture (i.e., traditional houses, traditional wooden doors, koochehes, clay buttresses, majmoo'ah (complex), wind-catchers (baadgeirs ), ground water reservoirs, Jam'a mosques, muqarnass, traditional tiles and tile-works, clay castles, palaces, and caravansaries);

Group 2) Historic Cities of Iran (i.e., Kaashaan, Naein [Naa-een], Kermaan City, Shiraaz, Persepolis, Isfahaan City, Yazd City, and other cities);

Group 3) Comparative Presentations: The clay architecture of Iran are compared to the European architecture (or to the stone architecture): A Pictorial Presentation of Art and Architecture in:
1) Armenia and Iran
2) Georgia and Iran
3) Turkey and Iran
4) Greece and Iran
5) Germany and Iran

Finally, the books that are introduced in this website (40+ e-books and paperbacks) are expected to make possible for all people in the world (--who may be interested in this subject but a traveling to such places may be either inconvenient or not possible for them), to have a chance to improve their knowledge about this subject in a convenient way, that is, by reviewing the series while just sitting in their offices or residences.