Mudun مدن

After one year of research, the Vitra Design Museum and Dubai-based magazine Brownbook present an exhibition on architecture and society in the MENA region (Middle East, North Africa).

Kamal El Kafrawi, Qatar University in Doha, Qatar, 1974–1983. Photo Markus Elblaus
The exhibition “Mudun مدن Urban Cultures in Transit” at the Vitra Design Museum views the cities of Ankara, Baghdad, Tehran and Tangier from a micro-perspective, examining their architecture, urban neighbourhoods and the protagonists who shape them. Featuring contemporary photographs, models and texts, the show conveys the dynamic atmosphere of individual locales and the relationship of inhabitants to their spatial surroundings.


The exhibition examines contemporary urban culture in the vibrant metropolises of the MENA region (Middle East and North Africa), which pulsate with an innovative cultural life – despite the political headlines. The architectural heritage of Modernism, the current situation in urban agglomerations and the stories of people living in the diaspora demonstrate how urban spaces shape cultural identity. The exhibition is divided into three thematic sections – “Architecture”, “Places” and “Societies” – which portray buildings, urban neighbourhoods and people. The title of the exhibition, mudun, is the Arabic word for “cities” – the plural form of the word medina.

Kamal El Kafrawi, Qatar University in Doha, Qatar, 1974-1983. Photo Markus Elblaus
Kamal El Kafrawi, Qatar University in Doha, Qatar, 1974-1983. Photo Markus Elblaus
The project is a cooperation between the Vitra Design Museum and the publishers of Dubai-based magazine Brownbook who collaborated over the course of an entire year, discussing the content and design of the exhibition in collaboration with a large group of curators.

from 13 May to 20 August 2017
Mudun مدن Urban Cultures in Transit
Vitra Design Museum
Charles-Eames-Straße 2, Weil am Rhein

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