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As my taxi wove through Baku’s bustling streets, I caught sight of an architectural marvel that immediately echoed the genius of Zaha Hadid. It was my very first day in the city and I was en route to a hotel after the arrival. Little did I know that this ethereal structure that had caught my attention was the Heydar Aliyev Center.

Heydar Aliyev Center

Named after the first secretary of Soviet Azerbaijan and later the president of the Azerbaijan Republic, Heydar Aliyev, this center is a testament to the transformative power of architecture. Zaha Hadid (1950-2016), the Iraqi-British trailblazer, won the design competition in 2007, shaping a space that defies convention and redefines Baku’s skyline.

Heydar Aliyev Center

This architectural masterpiece, comprising a conference hall, gallery hall, and museum, boldly rejects straight lines. Every contour of the building mimics a fluid wave, gracefully ascending from the ground to the sky and then gently descending back to earth. It’s a tribute to post-modern aesthetics, portraying an eternal cycle that seamlessly links the past with the present.

The absence of straight lines isn’t just an artistic choice—it’s a philosophy. 

Fluid Marvel: Exploring Heydar Aliyev Center’s Architectural Elegance

Heydar Aliyev Center
Heydar Aliyev Center
Defying basic design, this cultural center stands out with its distinctive, flowing, curved structure.
Heydar Aliyev Center
Heydar Aliyev Center, Baku, Azerbaijan
More than an architectural wonder, Heydar Aliyev Center symbolizes an innovative and progressive Azerbaijan.
Heydar Aliyev Center, Baku, Azerbaijan

The entire structure is a free-flowing fluid shape that changes based on the topography and the functions performed under or around it.

The absence of straight lines isn’t just an artistic choice—it’s a philosophy. The building’s curves symbolize the harmonious connection between the exterior and interior, erasing boundaries and creating an inclusive space. The Heydar Aliyev Center invites people to unite around shared ideas, fostering a sense of community.

Heydar Aliyev Center, Baku, Azerbaijan

The building’s uniqueness garnered international recognition. In 2013, the Heydar Aliyev Center was nominated for awards at the World Architecture Festival and the Inside Festival. The pinnacle came in 2014 when it clinched the Design Museum’s Design of the Year Award, marking Zaha Hadid as the first woman to secure the top prize in this prestigious competition.

Heydar Aliyev Center, Baku, Azerbaijan
Heydar Aliyev Center, Baku, Azerbaijan

The center is an avant-garde architectural marvel, globally recognized and nominated for multiple awards.

Whether you’re an architecture enthusiast or just someone with an eye for beauty, the Heydar Aliyev Center offers an immersive experience. Its design isn’t just about form; it’s a celebration of the interconnectedness of time and space.

In the heart of Baku, this architectural wonder invites you to explore its sinuous lines and discover the profound impact of Zaha Hadid’s vision. Allow the Heydar Aliyev Center to redefine your perspective on contemporary architecture, inviting you to embrace the beauty of fluidity.

Heydar Aliyev Center, Baku, Azerbaijan
Represented by folds in a continuous surface, the fluid form connects spaces while ensuring separate identity and privacy.
Heydar Aliyev Center, Baku, Azerbaijan
Heydar Aliyev Center, Baku, Azerbaijan
Heydar Aliyev Center, Baku, Azerbaijan
Heydar Aliyev Center, Baku, Azerbaijan
Heydar Aliyev Center, Baku, Azerbaijan
Heydar Aliyev Center, Baku, Azerbaijan
Heydar Aliyev Center, Baku, Azerbaijan
Heydar Aliyev Center, Baku, Azerbaijan
Heydar Aliyev Center, Baku, Azerbaijan
Heydar Aliyev Center, Baku, Azerbaijan

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About

It all began in my late teens with my father’s Mamiya 35mm SLR camera. Back then, learning photography and becoming a photographer in the traditional sense wasn’t my objective. What truly fascinated me was the power of capturing and preserving moments, allowing me to revisit them later.

As time passed I realized that photography is not just about capturing images; it’s a fascinating journey of exploration and observation that connects us with surrounding realities. It’s the art of seeing, exploring, and imagining the world through a lens—a belief in images’ power to stimulate thoughts and evoke emotions. Each captured moment in time tells a story, allowing the viewer to become immersed in the visual narrative commonly known as storytelling.

Travel Photography by Asif Naqvi

It is all about seeing, observing, and making visual notes.

As I spent more time with my camera, I discovered it to be more than just a device—it became an extension of my creativity, a tool that allowed me to express myself in profound ways. Having ventured into the realm of imagination, when life enabled me to step into the real world, I noticed and discovered a newfound appreciation for nature. Vast landscapes, delicate flora, and fascinating fauna inspired me to see the world anew.

When nature becomes overwhelming, I make my way back to human civilization. I wander through diverse cultures and untrodden paths, finding inspiration in the essence of each place and its people. Travel photography, for me, is a way to connect with the soul of a destination.

Constantly seeking fresh perspectives, I try to push boundaries to capture elusive moments that resonate deeply with the audience. Aksgar is not just an expression of my vision, but an invitation to see the world from a different angle, to find beauty in the seemingly mundane, and to appreciate the manners in which we exist.

With boundless enthusiasm in one hand and a camera in the other,

Aksgar by Asif Naqvi

Aksgar Asif Naqvi

Asif Naqvi is a Digital and Creative Nomad, an award-winning UX and UI Designer, a laid-back adventurer, somewhat of a gadget freak, and a husband and father of two. He is also the person behind Aksgar as a visual storyteller.

Aks Gar ( عکس گر ):
A Persian/Urdu compound word to describe an image maker or a photographer.

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