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We have been working with Studio Libeskind on the design for a museum of Kurdish culture to be based in Erbil, Iraq since 2010.

The reinforced concrete framed building features four interlocking spaces that represent the four countries which are home to the Kurdish people. These volumes are intersected by a line that is broken into two fragments. One – the “Liberty Line” – features an 80m-long exposed steel lattice structure that cantilevers upwards and incorporates public areas and gardens.

Comprising 14,000 square metres, the museum is planned to sit at the base of the city’s ancient Citadel and will feature exhibition spaces, a lecture theatre, state-of-the-art multimedia educational resources, an extensive digital archive of Kurdish historical assets, as well as a community centre and landscaped outdoor spaces for public use.

At the request of the city’s governor the project has been kept secret until Daniel Libeskind spoke publicly about it for the first time in April 2016. Engineers from Expedition visited Erbil and the site in 2014 with the design team and we are very pleased that the project is now out in the open.

“The museum aims to convey the spirit of the Kurdish people, their rich culture and the future of Kurdistan,” said Libeskind. “In a time of destruction, especially a time of cultural destruction, you have a desire to build. The team has embarked on a visionary project to share the story of the Kurdish people with the world and inspire an open dialogue for the future generations within Kurdistan”.

Read Libeskind’s statement in this Dezeen article. The project featured in an exhibition at Musée d’art et d’histoire in Geneva during October 2017.

See Daniel and studio partner Carla discussing the project along with footage of sketches and models in this hp commercial.

Renders courtesy of Hayes Davidson.


James Parker
Luis Rocha

Client: Kurdistan Regional Government

Client Representative: RWF World

Architect: Daniel Libeskind


Kurdistan Museum – Erbil