Standing majestically amongst the picturesque landscape of S2 City Park in Seremban 2, the Mosque was opened to the public on the 24th of October 2014. Masjid Hussain is a gift to the local Muslim community from philanthropist and banker, Tan Sri Rashid Hussain.Masjid Hussain measures more than 20,000 square meters and can accommodate up to 3,500 people at any one time; including a section for Muslimahs (female worshippers). It is also well equipped with modern facilities including a library and computer room amongst others.
We were fortunate enough to hijack some of AR Nik Azlan’s (Lead Architect of Masjid Hussain) time at his office downtown, in Senireka, Wisma Bumi Raya, Kuala Lumpur to find out more about Masjid Hussain.
1. What or who inspired you to become an architect?
My father is my inspiration. As an architect himself, it’s only natural that I follow in his footsteps. The things he designed and did when I was young influenced me greatly. He was and still is my inspiration that led me to become an architect.
2. Is this the first mosque that you design, if not list a few?
No, this is not the first mosque that I worked on; I was also responsible for the design of Masjid Tengku Ampuan Jemaah in Bukit Jelutong and Masjid Istana Diraja in Istana Alam Shah, Klang. I was part of the design team for Masjid Tuanku Mizan in Putrajaya. My elder brother led the design team for that one.
Our Client himself had a lot of ideas and what he wanted in the design. He laid out most of the requirements that led us to design a mosque centered around the Era or more commonly known as Ottoman.
4. What is the most unique feature on your design?
To me, I think the unique features are the domes. There are 10 domes altogether, 1 main dome and 9 other smaller domes. The main dome is flat dome design similar to the Turkish mosques in Istanbul.
5. Tell us more about the design, concept and the style of Masjid Hussain?
For the design of Masjid Hussain, we wanted to create something simple, not too much on the decorations but enough to indicate that it’s a mosque and it’s a Islamic building. The client, YB Tan Sri Rashid Hussain’s direction to the team was that he wanted something “Zen-like”, together with the interior designers we came up with this design. simple yet it stands out. The color is in a single shade of white.
6. Do you have a signature style, if yes, what is it?
Signature style. I have to be honest; I actually like to design Islamic buildings. Buildings that feature Islamic values, that’s why I am involved with a lots of mosque designs. I want my design to be an inspiration to all Muslims. God willing.
7. Which is your favorite building in the world?
The Corniche Mosque in new Jeddah by Abdel Wahed El-Wakil, an Egyptian architect. The mosque was actually meant to be a sculpture instead, but architect Abdel Wahed felt that it’s was better to build a mosque than just a mere sculpture.
8. Which architects do you admire the most and drawn inspiration from?
I have to say that it’s a tie between two names; Abdel Wahed El-Wakil and the other would have to be my father, Nik Muhammad bin Nik Mahmood. My father was involved in The Pusat Islam design in the 1980’s. I remember one time when he was involved in The Kuala Lumpur Tower (KL tower) project where he successfully incorporated Islamic elements into the building design. KL Tower features Islamic embellishments at the towerhead as an inverted Muqarnas (Traditional Islamic and Persian architectural design elements) design on the glass of the ceiling in the lobby.
What he attempted to do was, to incorporate Islamic design elements in modern building structures, which I thought was pretty unique. My office was also involved in the KL tower project; I was only doing my internship at that time.
9. Can you share with us your latest project that you are involved with?
I’m currently involved in one building in Shah Alam under JKR Selangor; it’s actually the administrative centre of the Masjid Sultan Sallehuddin Shah. They wanted to build an administrative centre which include an auditorium, a banquet hall and so on. We’ve completed the design and if I am not mistaken, they have just tendered it out for construction. We are waiting for construction to start on site. It will be in the same compound as the Masjid. The vision and wishes of Tuanku is for the administrative centre to locate facing the lake and to be separated from the mosque. Construction is supposed to start in July 2015, and if everything goes well, in 2 years time it will be ready.
AR Nik. Azlan, on behalf of the team at Like Magazine, we thank you for taking time to chat with us. Selamat Berpuasa.