Similarity and Distinction of Biram Ābād garden and Fath Ābād garden of Kerman with Each Other and the Persian Garden

Document Type : Research Article



Iranian traditional gardens are well-known among different gardens of the world. The importance of axial geometry which organizes plants, water and pavilion can be observed in many Persian gardens. The arrangements of elements are varied in different gardens so the spatial and visual qualities of each garden may differ from others. All of these gardens are part of the Iranian heritage.  They have been spread over the plateau of Iran and many of them are disused or have been vanished. Kerman gardens are an important part of Iranian gardens and unfortunatelymany of themhave already suffered a lot as the result of what may be the greediness of certain individuals as well as the lack of knowledge of owners or authorities. Biram Ābād garden which was built during  the Safavid Dynasty and Fath Ābād garden which was built during the Qajar dynasty  are two main gardens in Kerman which are placed in two different areas of the city.  Fath Ābād garden is in Ekhtiār Ābād village within a distance of six kilometers from Kerman, and  Biram Ābād garden is on  a  mountainside in the east of Kerman.  There are a lot of similarities between them.  These gardens are among the few and perhaps the only existing gardens in Iran, with two pavilions and this characterizes them from other gardens. In this paper first the structure and elements of each garden is studied, then the gardens are compared and differences and similarities are investigated. There are four topics for comparison of the two gardens: garden structure and its effective factors, the location of each pavilion and its function and spatial relation with other parts of the garden, the space arrangement according to emersion and quality of each space, and finally the study about the integration of the garden and nature. The first topic analyzes the role of axis (number, function, proportion, etc) and the order in each garden. The second is the study of pavilions, their plans, visual perception and the circulation between them in each garden. The third is about space quality and the observer perception in each garden. The forth is about the comparison between the integration of each garden with nature. During the research some hypotheses are proposed in order to explain the reasons and results of the differences between the two gardens with the Persian garden pattern, and the effect of the two pavilions and the multi axial geometry of each garden. The studies of the two gardens which were built several hundred years apart demonstrate some new points. Two effective axes with two pavilions in each garden are the distinctive characteristics which define new qualities and specify the two gardens from Persian garden pattern (Table 1). Although the two gardens have been formed through Persian garden pattern, the number of axis and pavilions causes different methods to reply to the functional, formal and spatial demands, and this difference effects the combination of parts and the whole of each garden. The organization of each garden axis is more complex than Persian garden pattern. Therefore, a new geometry is created which concentrates on two focuses (pavilions).  The effect of this organization changes the role and the quality of the axes, so different spaces with different qualities are created.  Unlike many Persian gardens, the two garden spaces don’t have definite boundaries but a continuous connection and integration with each other.  Therefore, everyone can perceive new experiences of space which is related to time. The location of the two pavilions in each garden and their place to each other is different. Therefore in Fath Ābād garden the functional and visual interaction between two pavilions are more than Biram Ābād garden. Although one of the two pavilions of each garden is the main one and similar to what is expected from Persian garden pavilion, the “U” shaped plan of the main  pavilion of the Fath Ābād garden and the  protrusion of the main pavilion from the garden wall in the Biram Ābād garden are the  exclusive characters of the two pavilions and confirm the ability of the Iranian architect in using creative methods for interacting architecture and nature. Studies of these two extraordinary gardens demonstrate the dominance of the pavilion and the axis in the organization of the garden. The form of the axis is not changed. The axis is characterized by the plants and especially by the form of the waterfront in all Persian gardens; the only difference is the number of the axis. On the other hand the pavilion, its form and location has an effective role in garden structure. It is important to mention that the differences and the similarities between the two gardens with Persian garden pattern and the sense of presence in each of them for the observer demonstrate the richness of the pattern and its capacity to adapt to contextual variants and also the skill of Persian architect who responds to the demands of the users of the space.