The magnificent structure that emerged as a result of the combination of functionality and aesthetics also represents Turkish structures and culture. These structures, which were built within the Diyanet Center of America, have a great contribution to the area and the surrounding area, especially from the Islamic point of view.
The Diyanet Center of America was first established in 1993 as the Turkish American Islamic Foundation. Then in 2003, it was renamed the Turkish American Community Center. Over time, the area, which received great support from the Presidency of Religious Affairs, gained its last name as the Diyanet Center of America.
Diyanet Center of America, Washington D.C. located in the region. The technical coordinator of the project was made by Hassa Architecture and its architect is Mustafa İskender. The building, which is a very important cultural center, reflects both Islamic culture and Islamic architecture with its different functional sections.
The Architecture of Diyanet Center of America
Diyanet Center of America was created by combining the most important features of the sixteenth century, functionality and aesthetics. The dome figure in traditional mosques has been designed in size the building by adding meaning to the mosque. However, the small domes carrying the big dome have undertaken both a structural and aesthetic task.
The mosque, which was built as a place of worship, was designed as a large and spacious area. Small domes were chosen on various sides to create a peaceful and majestic space. When creating such a large dome, you will not forget the solidity. In addition to small domes, structural elements called elephant feet were used to make the dome strong. These elements are also of great importance in traditional Ottoman Architecture.
Small arches were preferred to carry small domes and to create a more robust structure. Small arches, which create an eye-catching environment with their decorations, also provide an aesthetic appearance in the area. There are 4 marble columns in the mosque. Each of these columns was brought from the cities of Istanbul, Bursa, Afyonkarahisar, and Tokat, which are famous for their marble quality in Turkey.
The mosque, which can accommodate 760 people, has 2 minarets and there is a gallery in each minaret area. The mosque, which contains traditional motifs and historical ornaments, is also the only mosque with two minarets in North America.
Calligraphy, stained glass and decoration techniques were used to decorate the mosque. Especially in the art of calligraphy, a meaningful appearance was obtained in the mosque by using the gold leaf technique. Calligraphies written in the mosque and appealing to people were especially made inside the domes.
Since the domes, which have survived from the past to the present, also improve the acoustics of the mosque, the mosque appears with both functional and aesthetic features. The use of partitions in the mosque also supports the structure. The mosque was built in two parts, the harem and the courtyard, and was built to create a peaceful and bright space.
There is a fountain in the middle of the courtyard, and the fountain is in complete harmony with the mosque with its patterns and material variety. This courtyard area is surrounded by domes, reducing the disturbing wind effect in the area.
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While the domes we encounter in traditional Turkish architecture are preferred to create a wider area, they also serve as the symbol of the sky dome. While there is one big dome in the Diyanet Center of America, there are eleven small domes. The windows located under the main dome provide light to the area, while also making the Arabic calligraphy embroidered on the dome clear.
Calligraphy, which is a traditional decorative element, also creates an artistic breeze in the mosque. The ornaments in the center of the dome were decorated with various patterns based on the unity and uniqueness of Allah, creating harmony with calligraphy.
The arches, which are in charge of connecting the spaces to each other, serve as both a decorative and a structural element. Arches are adorned with white and green colors and patterns that will form integrity with the decoration of the mosque.
The muqarnas, which contain different geometric shapes, create an aesthetic appearance in the environment and create a pleasant transition between the columns and the arches. Muqarnas’s technique was also preferred to create a different atmosphere.
The minarets, which fascinate those who see them with their aesthetic structure, are two in number and have a very simple and elegant appearance. The minaret, which attracts the attention of the beholders with its stylish appearance, is decorated with led lamps and muqarnas located at the bottom of the balconies. Especially the LED lamps used were preferred to create an energetic atmosphere and to add vitality to the mosque.
The fountain model, which is preferred in almost every mosque due to its functionality, is designed to serve more people in a small area in the Diyanet Center of America. The fountain, which is open but decorated with various ornaments, creates a traditional appearance in the courtyard of the mosque. The fountain made of marble is specially designed to be compatible with the mosque.
While the bird kiosk was being built, it was thought to be the Ottoman Turkish concept in the mosque. Bird kiosk was also used in the mosque, as it was thought that they symbolized the birds of paradise. Bird kiosks used as a concept are positioned as six on the Diyanet Center of America.
Architectural Elements in the Diyanet Center of America
Diyanet Center of America has many important architectural elements and features in it. The architectural elements used in the mosque were made with special care. These elements, which reflect Ottoman architecture, were made with fine craftsmanship both to inform the visitors about the structure of the architectural elements and to create harmony within the area. These elements, which have a great impact, especially on the interior decoration of the mosque, fascinate those who see them with their decorations and provide information about the culture.
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Diyanet Center of America’s mihrap has a very interesting mihrab model. The mihrab model, which is decorated with tile patterns, especially in blue tones, is animated by using gilded muqarnas towards the interior.
The mihrab, which creates perfect harmony and harmony in the mosque, is made of marble. At the same time, gold leaf was used for decoration in the mihrab, which has eye-catching patterns. The figures used on the mihrab symbolize the 99 names of Allah.
It has an important place as a remarkable architectural element with its decorations on the minbar positioned on the right side of the mihrab. The blue tones used in the cone part of the pulpit were preferred both to create harmony with the interior decoration of the mosque and with different architectural elements. Like the mihrab, marbles produced in Turkey were used in the pulpit.
The mosque dais, which is made of wooden material, draws attention with its dark color and decorations. The dais model, which is decorated in a very detailed way, was made in Turkey and the kundekari technique was used on it. The product, in which polygons and stars are mainly used for decoration, manages to create a different feeling in people with its mother-of-pearl embroideries.
The Qur’an case inside the mosque was placed out of respect. The architectural element, which is equipped with various ornaments, adds a different atmosphere to the area with its pleasant appearance and reflects the Ottoman culture. Fine materials such as ivory, ebony, and mother-of-pearl have been meticulously applied to the case, which has a very pleasing appearance.
The mosque-stained glass, which manages to attract the attention of those who see it with its different colors and detailed embroidery, is especially preferred to create harmony in the area and add a different atmosphere. While creating an aesthetic atmosphere, the mosque stained glass model, which provides a more spacious and comfortable space by changing the color of the light entering the space, also enlivens the space.
Mosque-stained glass, which is the most effective way to change the environment, is used in the mosque, especially with its blue and orange colors. The stained-glass model, which symbolizes flowers and leaves, manages to attract attention with its pleasant appearance and gives people a different feeling.