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Tehran AA Tehran Visiting School 2014- Tradition Identity 1.0


Tradition and Identity

Dates - Summer 2016 (tbc)

Following the success of our previous courses in understanding and promoting public space and simple forms of manufacturing, this year we will return to look at the question of tradition and identity.
Iran has had a long and celebrated history in architecture and architectural innovation that dates back some 3000 years. From the ruins of Persepolis to cities such Isfahan and Yazd there has always been and intense relationship between architecture, context, environment, materiality and a clear identity, something which has almost disappeared from the current discourse of architecture.

There is no doubt that local material and craft contribute a great deal to any regions vernacular. Using traditional means of sourcing and creating material we will attempt to generate new kinds of materials, which build upon tradition. The aim will be to update traditional material and craft to be able to respond to the 21st century requirements.

The 2 week workshop will be split into 2 parts, the first week students will be encouraged to create new materials through a variation of techniques such as mixing, heating, gluing ext. The aim in this week is to create a new hybrid material, one, which has links to local and traditional material but is also capable of dealing with current and future requirements.
During the second week students will explore the potential of the new materials created though the creation of material systems that begin to respond to environmental conditions and allow them to test the material capabilities.
As with previous years, there will be lunchtime lectures by tutors and guests and a public exhibition of the works.


1) You can make an application by completing the online application found under ‘Links and Downloads’ on the AA Visiting School page. If you are not able to make an online application, email for instructions to pay by bank transfer.
2) Once you complete the online application and make a full payment, you are registered to the programme. A CV or a portfolio is not required.

The deadline for applications is: tbc

All participants travelling from abroad are responsible for securing any visa required, and are advised to contact their home embassy early. After payment of fees, the AA School can provide a letter confirming participation in the workshop.


The AA Visiting School requires a fee of £695 per participant, which includes a £60 Visiting membership fee.
Fees do not include flights or accommodation, but accommodation options can be advised. Students need to bring their own laptops, digital equipment and model making tools. Please ensure this equipment is covered by your own insurance as the AA takes no responsibility for items lost or stolen at the workshop.

The workshop is open to current architecture and design students, phd candidates and young professionals. Software Requirements: Adobe Creative Suite, Rhino (SR7 or later)

Students should be aware that visas are required for Visiting Schools held both in the UK and abroad and it is the student's responsibility to investigate what is required via the relevant embassies in their country.

Programme Director
Omid Kamvari is a British Iranian architect, researcher, and educator. His main areas of interest are Architecture and urbanism, Digital Design and manufacturing, Vernacular Design and Performance Orientated Design. He specialised in Emergent Technologies and Design and has since continued with research within this field with a particular interest in how they can form and forge new identities. He established Kamvari Architects a collaborative studio in London in 2011.[1] They currently operate from their based in London and Tehran. He has been teaching across the Middle East since 2006 and currently directs the AA Tehran and Baku Visiting Schools, and has directed and taught on AA Muscat Visiting School and AA Dubai Visiting School.


Programme Director
Omid Kamvari

Head of Visiting School

Christopher Pierce

T +44 20 7887 4014
F +44 20 7414 0782

Links & Downloads

Programme site

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Visiting School Prospectus


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The Architectural Association receives Taught Degree Awarding Powers by the Lords of Her Majesty’s Most Honourable Privy Council.

The Architectural Association (AA), the oldest independent school of architecture in the United Kingdom, is pleased to announce that it has been granted the power to award its own degrees. As of 1 October 2019, the AA has the right to establish new academic programmes and degree awards and is working to create some of the world’s most pioneering courses in architecture to shape and build the future.

Taught Degree Awarding Powers (TDAP) give UK higher education institutions the right to award bachelor’s and master’s degrees. Prospective students worldwide can apply to the AA Foundation Course (Foundation Diploma), Experimental Programme BA(Hons), Diploma Programme (MArch), and nine taught postgraduate programmes encompassing History and Critical Thinking in Architecture (MA), Projective Cities (Taught MPhil) and Sustainable Environmental Design (MSc/MArch), amongst others.

AA Director, Eva Franch said, ‘since our founding in 1847 we have never ceased to create new horizons, institutionally and academically. This is a significant milestone for the AA and demonstrates how we have grown and progressed as an institution that has always valued independence. Receiving TDAP marks a new era for our institution; these are exciting times for the AA. The process has required considerable work from all members of staff and students. I would like to take this opportunity to credit them for this major achievement’.

President of the AA Council, Victoria Thornton added, ‘the TDAP process has recognised our strong governance, academic standards, scholarship and teaching as well as the environment supporting the delivery of taught higher education programmes’.

The School’s application for Taught Degree Awarding Powers was supported by the Architects Registration Board, the Royal Institute of British Architects and The Open University.