Representing occulted projections: Cultivating anamorphic visions in the Paradise Garden
Master of Architecture
Our conception of Paradise is derived from the Old Persian word pairidaeza, referring directly to a hidden, walled garden. Such a mythical garden protects its occupant from the extrinsic gaze of those less fortunate. Taqiyah involves the precautionary dissimulation of faith in a hostile environment. For persecuted developing sects in medieval Persian Islam, taqiyah became an important cultural practice. Such persecution gave rise to a production of artifacts whose significant meanings were disguised within complex compositions. Understanding the nature of these compositions provides insight into the nature of perception and its role in architectural experience. These artifacts contain projective anamorphic devices that distort vision and obscure interpretation. They demonstrate taqiyah through visual estrangement and temporal defamiliarization. The isolation and architectural deployment of these dissimulative devices can create a dynamic interactive environment that initiates the occupant with a continually changing understanding of the architecture through time.
Art history; Landscape architecture; Architecture