Architecture of the Middle Niger River in Mali:

Conformity, Innovation, and Diversity

Selected Mosques in Mali: Bamako


Bamako, the capital of Mali, is the administrative center of the country and its largest city (Fig. 2). About one fifth of the total population of the country lives in Bamako, which includes many mosques and a wide range of architectural forms. Some of the most interesting of these are local community mosques, including one that is thoroughly embedded in the urban environment. Located in the heart of Bamako, it resembles just another commercial or residential building except that it is set apart by its bright colors—ochre, green, and pink—and also by its two green onion domes. The symbols of crescent moon, star, and ostrich egg also identify it as a mosque, sacred and separate from the other buildings in the center of Bamako. More ‘traditional’ mosques, such as those in the Sudanic style, reside far from Bamako.