Madina Sabir’s original theme was around Islamic culture, her culture, Pakistani culture. She started delving into design aspects of the culture, looking through family photos, Islamic prints, art and specifically Islamic architecture. Sabir’s design style is very structural and exaggerated so she researched Islamic architecture and how it has influenced architects from different countries. She looked at Muslim architects who travelled to other countries, building and spreading the culture whilst taking influence from both Islam and the location. The Hagia Sophia in Turkey piqued Sabir’s interest. It was originally a church that was ‘metamorphosed’ into a mosque to fit with the culture that dominated the country. This inspired Sabir to investigate how other cultures inspired or changed pre-existing cultural architecture and buildings to coincide with change in a country.
Instead of trying to create a theme for most cultures, Sabir limited it to three that interested her: Islamic, Japanese and Greek culture. Like Islamic culture, Japanese architecture influenced other architects. However instead of changing a pre-existing design, it influenced a change in modern European and western architecture. Although Greek culture has heavily influenced architecture around the world, Greek architecture was known to be changed. The Parthenon was constantly changing in and out of a church from its original purpose. Changing, influencing change and being changed. Sabir researched what architects used to inspire their designs outside of architecture. Based on her research, Sabir found and created boards on art, prints, silhouettes, bodies, the human form, structure, perspective, fabrication and patterns.