Villa Shali-Kar by Kanlan

Villa Shali-Kar is a beautiful concrete residence in Mazandaran Province, Iran, designed by Kanlan in 2022.

Villa Shali-Kar by Kanlan - 1
Villa Shali-Kar by Kanlan - 2
Villa Shali-Kar by Kanlan - 3
Villa Shali-Kar by Kanlan - 4
Villa Shali-Kar by Kanlan - 5
Villa Shali-Kar by Kanlan - 6
Villa Shali-Kar by Kanlan - 7
Villa Shali-Kar by Kanlan - 8


The process of rice cultivation is called “Shali-Kari” in Persian and “Shali-Kar” is the one who works in the paddy fields. The life of Shali-Kar depends on the ground; while it always has a step in the water and another on the land. They farm in the water and build the foundations of their houses on the same lands. Indeed, their lives are as floating as a sponge on the water; it soaks up water.

The “North” in Iranian culture doesn’t refer only to a geographical direction, but it’s a term that indicates an aspect of Iranian collective memory. It signifies a specific location in which the sea, mountain, and plain meet each other. The lifestyle of northern Iran inhabitants used to be defined as an extroverted living. The distance between their habitats was dependent on their land extent. Furthermore, the humid climate played an important role in shaping their vernacular architecture which “Ivan” was the fundamental part of the house.

The Shali-Kar Villa Seeks to Link the social life of its inhabitants to the traditional architecture of northern Iran. It introduces a section and replies to the inner aspect of vernacular geography. The design idea of the project is to create an elevated house that lies on a structural platform. An alley is also designed within the house which integrates all the interior and exterior spaces. The alley meets a courtyard at the center of the building. The flow of the spaces from the landscape into the building combines the essence of living in the north with the dynamic contemporary lifestyle.

Visuals courtesy of Kanlan

Visit Kanlan

- by Matt Watts