Encapsulating the Translatory Attributes in the Formulation and Development of the Selected Modernist Building Constructed in Islamabad, Capital of Pakistan


  • Mansoor Ahmed Department of Architecture and Design, COMSATS, Lahore




National Identity, Modernity, New Nations State


Right after the construction of Islamabad, National Capital of Pakistan, different foreign architectswere hired by the State to undertake landmark projects in the city. Most notable among them were Doxiadis, Kenzo Tange, Edward Durell Stone. The preference given to these foreign architects over the local architect was tied to the inherited ideas of Modernist Supermacy, ‘glorified western cultures’ and their understanding of the traditional architecture specifically the so called, Islamic architecture. It was assumed that the architecture, foreign architects will produce would be technologically advanced, help in the International recognition of national architecture and become a symbol of Nation’s progression. The paper focusses on a comparative critique of the two landmark projects namely Presidential Estate and Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission building (PAEC) named as Pakistan Institute of Nuclear Science and Technology (PINSTECH), both situated in Islamabad and designed by Edward Durell Stone. These two buildings have been analysedwith reference to the background forces, in line to Foucault’s term,narrated as political power, subjectivity and resistance. The research has anchored on the idea that in line with the official brief, the former project was not only inspired byInternationalstyle,but also adapted to the Mughal gardens in terms of grandeur and spatial construction. On the other hand, PINSTECH building can be read as an effort of the forceful marriage of states religious subjectivities and Modernity. The paper concludes with ‘folk architecture’ a term coined by Doxiadis and reading it in conjunction with the architectural anomalies.


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How to Cite

Mansoor Ahmed. (2017). Encapsulating the Translatory Attributes in the Formulation and Development of the Selected Modernist Building Constructed in Islamabad, Capital of Pakistan. Creative Space, 4(2), 179–188. https://doi.org/10.15415/cs.2017.42003