As an architect and a photographer, I wrestle constantly with how to expand on the notion of seeing things from all angles. Often an angle least considered is the bird’s-eye view—straight down. This came to mind when I thought about photographing the King Abdullah Sports City Stadium, designed by Arup and inaugurated May 1, 2014. Located on the north side of Jiddah, along Saudi Arabia’s west coast, it is now the second-largest stadium in the country.
From about 500 meters, in the moments after sunset when the sky was fading into dusk, the interplay of light and dark brought out lines, spaces and patterns. Isosceles triangles and V-frames fused the stadium’s references to Islamic geometry with futurism, creating a faceted symmetry, ringed with parking lot lights like beads, that shows how the stadium has earned its nickname, "al-jawhara al-mosha’ya”—“the shining jewel.”