Duration of Building Sky from Grand Mosalla Tehran to Willy Brandt Airport Berlin

Series of 5 drawings, fountain pen and ink on cardboard, 2013
each 44 x 32 cm

In her series of ink drawings Duration of Building Sky from Grand Mosala Tehran till Willy Brandt Airport, Neda Saeedi inspects and collages two representative buildings in the making, each striving to connect ground and sky: The world's largest mosque, Grand Mosala in Tehran, whose construction began in 1990, and Berlin Brandenburg Airport, whose construction began in 2006. Both are united by the fact that they are constantly being postponed to the future, by the increasing and indefinite duration of their construction.
Saeedi takes this opportunity to redesign the architecture. The Mosala Mosque dome, for example, is not flanked by minarets, but by the doubled Infotower of Willy Brandt Airport. In the background we see their two conditions of enabling: a revolving tower crane, the supposedly profane symbol of building construction, whose cross shape here appears ambiguously significant.
The airport as a non-place (Marc Augé), as a place of passage that one does not enter in order to linger, but to leave as quickly and as far as possible at first seems to contrast temporally with the sacred place of commemoration in a community that creates identity. In Saeedi's deserted sceneries, however, the correspondences in form vocabulary, reference to heaven, and incompletion of the two buildings come to the fore, transferring antonyms such as non-place and anthropological place, secularity and sacrality, transience and eternity, humility and hubris soberly into a Babylonian confusion of images.

Nina Tabassomi