Ray of Light Mosque – project of modern architecture

Tuesday May 17 2011

ZEST Architecture from Spain designed for the international competition “Design as Reform” a new mosque in Dubai `Ray of Light`.

Our concept was devoted to solving the complex issue of allowing women to pray in the main prayer hall alongside the men while meeting requirements for a certain gender separation.

The prayer hall rests on a landscape which houses the ablution areas, library, café and community centre and parking. This landscape serves to lift up the mosque to its own, sacred level, with the gently rising ramp which leads us past the ablution areas to the entrance, serving as a `path of purification`.

The plan of the prayer hall, which can accommodate up to 860 believers, is rotated 45 degrees, with the entire shape pointing towards the Kaaba in Mekka. The rotation of the prayer hall has the effect of placing the women behind the men, as was customary in the first years of islam, when praying usually took place in the air.