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Abstract _ Gerhard Martin Burs

On the importance of multimedia visualization for current architecture

- the example of the United Arab Emirates

The Objective of this research is to analyze the phenomenon of digital visualization of new architectural projects before they are built. This phenomenon has been much observed since the beginning of the 21st century. The analysis would contribute greatly to both architectural and media theories. Although CAD based visualizations have been thoroughly researched, the research has been focused on the technical aspects of visualization technologies. The effects of digital visualization on the architectural development process have seldom been subject of comprehensive architectural research. The research of film and schematic visualizations will be done within the context of the United Arab Emirates in the years between 2002 and 2010. This will help to close the gap and produce a clear perspective of the influence on the development process.

The fundamental thesis of the dissertation proposes that architecture is developed within a social, aesthetic and communicative context. Therefore it can only be assimilated and accepted after being placed within its context. The architectural visualizations function as an experimenting floor. They allow the communication between the inner sight of the architect and a factual representation of architectural projects within a context. Such representations allow a contextual interpretation and correction of the projects. The various architectural visualizations from the United Arab Emirates have created a myth within the media of a U.A.E. of the future. Part of the thesis is that the development process has seized this myth and assumed it as part of the architectural context. In order to answer these questions, extensive research must be performed of all non-interactive architectural visualizations from the U.A.E.. This qualitative and quantitative analysis will probably contain the media context of the projects. This context will then be analyzed and compared with pre-established examples. It will then be interpreted regarding its importance towards creating the myth “U.A.E. of the future”. The influence of this media context for the architectural development will be critically and thoroughly analyzed using well documented and developed architectural projects from the U.A.E.. The results from this study will not only be great assets for the architectural theory. Furthermore they will provide a better understanding of the conflict that arises between the virtual visualizations and the real space setting of a project within the media.


Gerhard Martin Burs, Mediale Präsentation in der Gegenwartsarchitektur. Das Beispiel der Vereinigten Arabischen Emirate, Bielefeld: transcript 2016