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Idea by

Hamed Bukhamseen, Ali Karimi

CIVIL ARCHITECTURE

, Kuwait
CIVIL ARCHITECTURE is a cultural practice preoccupied with the making of buildings and books about them. CIVIL’s work asks what it means to produce architecture in a decidedly un-civil time, presenting a new civic character for a global condition. Since its founding by Hamed Bukhamseen and Ali Karimi, the practice has attracted a strong following for their provocative works and their offer of an alternate future to a nascent Middle East.

Foreign Architecture as Domestic Policy


Kuwait’s Q8 Abroad

Foreign Architecture as Domestic Policy


Kuwait’s Q8 Abroad
FADP represents an exercise in branding a nation and securing a market for a country’s exports.
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The thousand gas stations built by Q8 across Europe tell the story of a small country’s midcentury growth, rebranding, and international prominence. By looking at Q8 (a subtle moniker for the State of Kuwait) gas stations across Europe, we can understand architectures role in foreign and domestic policy.

The project borrows its initial premise from the intellectual lineage of two key art/architectural projects: “Twenty Six Gasoline Stations” by Ed Ruscha and “White Towers” by Steve Izenour + Paul Hirschorn. These two books - both important contributions to the discussion of “pop” and architecture – describe the commercial landscape of post-war America, revealing an alternate landscape and idea of America as formed by the automobile. In contrast to modern architecture, the move towards pop heralded a post-modernity in which the generic and popular became the focus of design. The Q8 case is perhaps an act of political pop, revealing the common to be not generic but highly specific.


A snow covered Q8. Photo by Malte Rasmussen 2014

Foreign Architecture as Domestic Policy


Kuwait’s Q8 Abroad

Foreign Architecture as Domestic Policy


Kuwait’s Q8 Abroad
FADP represents an exercise in branding a nation and securing a market for a country’s exports.
File under

The thousand gas stations built by Q8 across Europe tell the story of a small country’s midcentury growth, rebranding, and international prominence. By looking at Q8 (a subtle moniker for the State of Kuwait) gas stations across Europe, we can understand architectures role in foreign and domestic policy.

The project borrows its initial premise from the intellectual lineage of two key art/architectural projects: “Twenty Six Gasoline Stations” by Ed Ruscha and “White Towers” by Steve Izenour + Paul Hirschorn. These two books - both important contributions to the discussion of “pop” and architecture – describe the commercial landscape of post-war America, revealing an alternate landscape and idea of America as formed by the automobile. In contrast to modern architecture, the move towards pop heralded a post-modernity in which the generic and popular became the focus of design. The Q8 case is perhaps an act of political pop, revealing the common to be not generic but highly specific.


A snow covered Q8. Photo by Malte Rasmussen 2014


Idea by

Hamed Bukhamseen, Ali Karimi
CIVIL ARCHITECTURE
Kuwait
CIVIL ARCHITECTURE is a cultural practice preoccupied with the making of buildings and books about them. CIVIL’s work asks what it means to produce architecture in a decidedly un-civil time, presenting a new civic character for a global condition. Since its founding by Hamed Bukhamseen and Ali Karimi, the practice has attracted a strong following for their provocative works and their offer of an alternate future to a nascent Middle East.