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Centerbrook Architects Lecture Series: Theodore Sawruk with “Mayhem and Merriment: Contemporary Architecture in Afghanistan”

February 26, 2021 @ 7:00 pm


Herat is perhaps the most beautiful of Afghanistan’s ancient cities.  It has been a settlement for over 2,500 years and a major center of culture in the Islamic world.  When Ted Sawruk, Associate Professor of Architecture at the University of Hartford, first entered Herat, it appeared to be a mid-size thriving urban center filled with the vitality of so many of its Middle-eastern counterparts.  Yet, he was soon confronted by a stylistic collage of architectural fabrications which rivaled the fantastic world of Tim Burton or the retro-fitted future of Ridley Scott.  The texture of Herat has changed dramatically from the Beaux Arts Classicism associated with the British period and the International Style modernism imposed during the Russian occupation.  It is now over-run with a festival of built expressions and stylistic representations, one could only describe as Islamic Mannerism. With an almost Victorian aesthetic, the current architecture trend is less about continuity or compliment and more about abundance in all aspects of building: texture, pattern, and materials.  To western eyes it is a shock, but to locals these “Persian palaces” stand as a visual oasis against the harsh, unforgiving landscape. Join us for a closer look at Herat’s architecture on Friday, February 26 at 7 p.m. on Zoom. Registration is required.

Theodore Sawruk received his Bachelor of Architecture from Carnegie-Mellon University and his Graduate Diploma in Architectural History and Theory from the Architectural Association School of Architecture, London England.  Associate Professor Sawruk is a full-time academic with the University of Hartford, Department of Architecture, teaching in the graduate program.  He has previously served as an Assistant Professor of Architecture at various institutions, including Hampton University, Southern Polytechnic University, University of Arkansas, and Drury College. Recently, Ted has been working jointly with American and Afghan faculty and administrators to establish a new architecture degree program at Herat University, Afghanistan.

This illustrated lecture is free and open to the public. For more information or to register, please call the Essex Library at (860) 767-1560 or https://www.youressexlibrary.org/adult-services/adults-featured-events/


February 26, 2021
7:00 pm
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Essex Library Association
(860) 767-1560
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