THE MAKING OF A MOSQUE
Scheidegger und Spiess, Park Books, 2022
French version of the book by Scriptum
Symbol of Islam, monument of superlatives, and the heart of an entirely new metropolitan district: the Djamaa al-Djazaïr is an edifice with many different facets. In 2008, Frankfurt-based architecture firm KSP Engel’s design won the international competition for Algiers new Grand Mosque, which was completed in 2019 after more than a decade of planning and construction work. The vast structure runs along the Bay of Algiers shoreline for well over 650 yards. A giant 230 feet-high dome covers the main prayer hall, and the 870 feet-high minaret constitutes Africa’s tallest building to date. Surrounded by extensive gardens, the entire complex houses a range of facilities, including a museum, a theological college, a library, a convention center, and a cinemateque. It forms a unique religious, cultural, and economic center that is a magnet for the entire region. And it unites as an intercultural undertaking combining genuine Algerian craftsmanship with superb Chinese efficiency and meticulous German planning and engineering skills.
With rich detail and lavish illustrations, this book tells the full story of how Algiers Djamaa al-Djazaïr, the world’s third-largest mosque after those of Mecca and Medina, was created and constructed. A historical and typological classification of this singular structure in the long history of mosque construction rounds out this stunning volume.