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Art, Design, Artefacts

Al-Shaheed Monument
Tuesday, 11.03.2014

The al-Shaheed Monument, also known as the Martyr's Memorial, is a monument in the Iraqi capital Baghdad dedicated to the Iraqi soldiers who died in the Iran-Iraq war. The Monument was opened in 1983, and was designed by the Iraqi architect Saman Kamal and the Iraqi sculptor and artist Ismail Fattah al-Turk. During the 1970s and 1980s, Saddam Hussein's government spent a lot of money on new monuments, which included the al-Shaheed Monument.

The monument rests on a site comprised of green areas, a children's playground, car parks, walkways and bridges, and a lake. Amid the lake is an island of two circular platforms - one above the other - on which the monument is set. The monument is a 40m shell split in two and slided to form an inverted and disjoined S in plan which resembles the domes of the Abbasid era. Inside one of the dome shells is a circular water pool that cascades its contents to the courtyard below. The structure built on two levels under the platform comprises: a museum, a library, a cafeteria, lecture hall, exhibition gallery and support facilities. The shells are constructed of a galvanised steel frame with glazed ceramic tile cladding pre-cast in carbon fiber reinforced concrete.

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