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Diane Al Shihabi & Mikesch Muecke

Author: Heather Sauer | Image: Heather Sauer

College of Design faculty members Diane Al Shihabi, associate professor of interior design, and Mikesch Muecke, associate professor of architecture, were invited by the US Department of State Bureau of Overseas Building Operations Office of Cultural Heritage (under the leadership of ISU architecture alumnus Tobin Tracy) to document the American Legation in Tangiers, Morocco, as part of the ISU-US Department of State Cultural Heritage Documentation Project. The American Legation, a complex of buildings straddling the Rue d’Amerique in the Medina (old city) of Tangiers, is the first and only United States National Historic Landmark abroad, and is the first property acquired by the United States in a foreign country.

As part of their DSN S 546: Preservation and Cultural Heritage Tangier, Morocco: International Perspectives and Design Issues interdisciplinary studio, Al Shihabi and Muecke led 24 students on an international field trip to Tangiers from Feb. 10-17. Students conducted interviews with Legation staff; surveyed the buildings, courtyards and roof terraces using the College of Design’s BLK 360 Leica lidar scanner and Panono 360° camera; and documented the extensive collections, including artwork donated by Americans to the Legation. Students also visited other sites in Morocco, including Chefchaouen, Fes, Casablanca and Marakesh.

The results of their studio work, which includes interactive websites and virtual-reality environments constructed by the students, will be shared in an end-of-semester review and exhibition on Wednesday, May 1. Email or for more information.