On our way back to Tehran we stayed a couple of days in the northern parts of Esfahan province. In Kashan, a city of about 400 000, we experienced some of the most exquisite examples of Persian architecture.
Next up on our journey was the capital during the Safavid rule of Iran and modern Iran's third largest city: Esfahan. As a former royal capital it exhibits an abundance of grandiose public buildings and palaces from the 16th to 18th century. The huge (way too big to grasp by a picture) Naqsh-e Jahan Square is the city's historical center of both political, religious and commercial power.
Our next stop on our epic Iran-trip was the ancient city of Yazd, a labyrinthine and mud-clad desert city, six hours by train south of Tehran. Considerably smaller than the capital (roughly half a million people) and UNESCO protected it has been able to keep its dense and homogeneous old city core.
This spring's official Arkemi study trip went to... *drum roll*... Iran. Birthplace of such important things as the solar calendar, backgammon, Persian rugs and of course: our friend and CEO Kayrokh Moattar.
Conceptual sketch for a parametric facade design based on solar heat gain.