Three Holy Defense Memorials: Reflections on Design Theory

Document Type : مقاله کوتاه


1 Assistant Professor, Faculty of Architecture, Collage of Fine Arts, University of Tehran

2 Professor, Faculty of Architecture, Collage of Fine Arts, University of Tehran


A memorial is a structure built with the intention to commemorate a person or an event. It also represents beliefs, values and the identity of a people or territory. Design of a memorial thus becomes a complicated architectural problem.
Several memorials were designed and built pursuant to the Iran-Iraq war (1980~1988) to commemorate its heroes or events. These can be divided to three categories: (i) story-based memorials that depict a certain event; (ii) symbolic memorials that employ commonly accepted symbols of war and martyrdom; and (iii) conceptual memorials, which are abstract expressions of an epistemological impression, linked to their specific location.
This paper analyzes three sample memorials in terms of their design concepts, function, location, symbolic expression, etc. These include: the Chamran Martyry built in Dehlavieh Village, Khuzestan; University of Tehran Martyrs Memorial, built in Tehran University Main Campus; and the Holy Defense National Memorial to be built at the entrance of Holy Defense Museum in Tehran. Recommendations are made in conclusion for an improved design of memorials.

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