public lecture// SAND_BOX:; WORK AND PLAY


This Wednesday January 4th 2012,As we start another year in FAED,arcbox lecture series will have the pleasure to present to you the work of SAND_BOX by Bruce Engel; who is a new instructor of architectural design 3.

Bruce Engel is co-founder and partner of sand_box which operates from New York and Chicago. Over the last 10 years his design firm has designed and built a range of projects including, new construction, renovations, installations, product design, and digital media. His lecture will provide a wide survey of work from the beginnings of sand_box until present day all with a focus on the importance and role of PLAY.

public lecture// THE IMPORTANCE OF LANGUAGE SHAPING URBAN DEVELOPMENT


This Wednesday 21st DECEMBER. The arcbox lecture series will have the pleasure to present the importance of language in shaping urban development by Dr. llaria Boniboruni.

to help architecture students know about their lecturers; through a series of lectures, arcbox lecture series will present to you all new lecturers of the department.

Dr.llaria is a new lecturer in the Department of architecture.This time she is going to share with us,”How words make the city”.

Words are very important not only to communicate and understand each other, but also to give meaning to things and therefore to shape reality. They are also important in architecture, urban design and urban planning because they have the power to influence the way we think about the city, how to interpret it, how to represent it and therefore how to change it.

The discourse about the city through the years has produced many ideas of what the city is, should be and how to achieve that idea. The production of these ideas is a “battle field” where different ideas struggle to emerge. The idea that manages to become dominant has the power to influence, more than other ideas, other discourses, to influence urban policies, masterplans and the way architects and planner envisage and design the city and/or parts of it.

Dr.llaria will show us how different ideas of the city have been conveyed, and how these have the power to construct different types of cities and different types of citizenship.
Nairobi will be used as a point in case to see how words have contributed to a certain type of urban development.

ARCHITECT OF THE MONTH

ANNA HERINGER
"Architecture is a tool to improve lives." Anna Heringer
Learning with joy is the school’s philosophy – the best for me is to see the building crowded with sprightly kids, who are really happy to go to school. It is primarily not the architecture that makes something special – it’s the people: everyone who worked on it with all efforts and potentials and all who live in it and fill the space with atmosphere.” Anna Heringer
Anna Heringer designed and realized in Bangladesh a “handmade” school that highlights the use of the natural materials that the country is increasingly forsaking in favor of industrial materials. They are built by hand by local laborers, who learn new construction methods. “People are becoming interested now in finding their own solutions, not just copying the West,” said Anna Heringer
Anna Heringer, young woman architect, was born in 1977 in Rosenheim (Germany), grew up in Laufen a.d. Salzach and is currently living in Salzburg (Austria). 
Anna Heringer spent one year in Bangladesh (1997/98) as development learner. Since then she is involved in development work. She studied architecture at the University of Art Linz, where she graduated in 2004 with her diploma: "School-handmade in Bangladesh."   
      
 An important focus of her work is the training of young architects. She has conducted hands-on workshops for students with BASEhabitat in South Africa, Austria and Bangladesh. In 2008 she was teaching at the Stuttgart University and since 2008 she is heading the studio "BASEhabitat" where she is a visiting professor. In 2010 she received the nomination as Honorary Professor of the UNESCO Chair "Earthen Architecture".

Anna Heringer won several international awards; amongst them she won the prestigious Aga Khan Award for Architecture for her ingenious design of a primary school in rural Bangladesh that combined modern construction techniques with traditional, locally available materials such as bamboo sticks, earth, and straw. She won the AR Emerging Architecture Award (2006 and 2008)

Retrieved from

ARCBOX EXHIBITION INVITES YOU TO THE ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN, LAST YEAR BEST WORKS.COME ONE COME ALL.

REVIEW_KISSED




At first we ask ourselves about the name but few minutes after the lecture began we start to understand that it is all about images and what they really tell us, what do you see in those different images.


She came for the first time to Rwanda after being fascinated by a picture of an over-terraced hill. She wanted to understand, why? And how, a culture is organized and a society works in order to produce a change in the landscape like that.

Yutaka has been working in Rwanda with General Architecture Collaborative. This firm works not only in architecture but also related to anthropology.

One of their projects in Rwanda is to work with people to build an imudugudu but also researching about the evolution of Rwanda architecture, the importance of western architecture and conceptions and their relation with Rwandan traditions
She discussed about the latest constructions built in Kigali comparing them to the Nyakatsi, she defended that the image of the country is changing according to the needs of the government and the needs of the foreign investors. The beautiful green gardens and shiny new buildings are an image addressed to the foreign investors to give them an idea of the country, related to modernity, safeness and economic growth.

Yutaka’s work studies the idea of reconciliation in Rwanda; it’s not only a matter of people but also a matter of spaces. How can we get peace through spaces, and through building processes. When the offender build a house for the victims or when they all site together in the same space.

It was interesting to see her point of view of “domestic spaces” here in Rwanda. How she understands the discretion of the Rwandese people in public spaces. She explained how private spaces in our houses are more “public” and freer, than the actual public ones. How we use the back of our “domestic home”, changing it into a public space, were we invite outsiders, enjoy and discuss.

She explained her idea of western people having a wrong image of Rwanda, they don’t see people laughing, dancing but they see people carrying guns, peoplewalking almost wearing nothing and tell us she will go back in Syracuse university and will discuss with her students about images she will bring from Rwanda and show them that the images they have of us are wrong.

During her work in Albania, on an old rail station, she designed a transformation of an abandoned rail station. It was interesting to see how her idea of transforming something and adding something can change everything rather than to destroy it and start scratch.

At the end of the lecture we start to think more about images we look at, what do they really tell us, those millions of images we see everyday?

public lecture_KISSED by Yutaka Sho


This WEDNESDAY 14TH DECEMBER. The arcbox lecture series will have the pleasure to present the work of Yutaka Sho.


Yutaka's work and teaching are built around an effort to redraw established borders between perceived geographical, cultural, economic, racial, ethical and aesthetic boundaries. She understands her work as an interface between continents, disciplines, concepts and modes of operations.

Yutaka is the founder of General Architecture Collaborative, and currently they are working on a housing project with an association of widows in Rwanda, master plan of a new university in Uganda and a design of a camera obscura in the US, among other projects. Their work has been published in Domus web and exhibited at 2010 Venice Biennale. When she is not searching for the best zingaro in Rwanda, Yutaka is an assistant professor of architecture at Syracuse University in New York.

The lecture will take place in FAED building at 4.00pm, we hope to see you all there.


REVIEW_TOUCHING THE GROUND


I know the price of success: dedication, hard work, and an unremitting devotion to the things you want to see happen” said Frank Llyod Wright.

This Friday the Arcbox lectures series had the privilege of hosting one of the best lecture up to now: “TOUCHING THE GROUNG” based on the doctorate thesis of Toma Berlanda, one of our senior lecturers.

Tomà is a senior lecturer of the department of architecture at FAED, KIST and he is known for his comments emphasizing the importance on how the buildings touch the ground. In his lecture, he started by introducing to the audience his thesis project, how he started and methods he used to get to the final product. He created a lexicon (collection of words) to help him to understand and give order to architects intentions.

He took the audience through his thesis starting by the idea that architects are the ones that modify the ground the importance of how they consider the ground in their designs. He called this “Encounter the ground”.

He proceeded by showing what happened once the building touches the ground. Once the building meets the ground there is a discovery of the territory. The architect has to find the correct placement and start to consider the “growth” of the building, horizontal and the vertical, if he or she wants the building to have the vertical part at the upper part or at the intersection with the ground.

He gave importance to the fact that the architect is the one who decide to which extent the building touches or modifying the ground and not just the engineer. This was supported by examples of architects who considered the ground in their designs like Sverre Fehn, Le Corbusier, Dimitri Pikionis…..

He ended up by explaining the tectonics which is how the building parts come together and how these ones meets with the ground.

The presentation was followed by a series of questions by guests and students: Eudes Kayumba Arch.-who is one of the successful Rwandese architects-, arch. Luca Ginouliach -who works in UNICEF- and many students.


The Arcbox culture committee,representing the students, are thankful for this opportunity that were given to all students to experience a real presentation of a thesis project. We thank arch.Tomà Berlanda for his time and we encourage all students to be more participative in our lecture series.



PUBLIC LECTURE_TOUCHING THE GROUND


This week, we will restart the series of public lectures at the faculty of architecture and creative design. We will start this year with Tomà Berlanda PH.d, a senior lecturer and a researcher of the department of architecture in FAED. Tomà has also taught in Italy, switzerland and the United States.


Tomà Berlanda, is an architect and a researcher. Born in Venice he developed his studies of architecture in the Accademia della architettura di Mendrisio (USI) and then got his Ph.D in the Politecnico di torino, with the thesis: topographical Lexicon. He will present his research on the way buildings "touch" the ground. How different architects and buildings try to give answers and react to their sites.


The Lecture will take place at FAED Building TODAY 9th december 2011, 4.00pm



The research project stems from a reflection on the relationship between architecture and place.


Amidst many, two question, which have already and at length been debated, deserve further investigation and experimentation. The first is the hiatus between recurrent statements on the necessity of the marking of the ground, the importance of placing the building, of the topographical situation, and the absence of scientific criteria to put into practice these indications. “Great” architects, more or less consciously, build up their personal toolbox. Aalto’s drawings show “one single and integral moment of stratigraphy, of every stratigraphy including lakes, water and seas, and contour lines”, in Utzon’s buildings the constructive logic of the tectonic form and the syntactic logic of geometry are continuously interacting, in Siza the work of the architect is thoroughly linked to that of the topographer. But the attention to the geographic patterns of places, to the form of the landscape and the singularities of topographies is not immediately translated into architecture, and to establish which are the moments of mediation is no easy task.


The second question is the diffused habit, almost a stereotype in the critical language, of praising a building as an “architecture creating a place where once stood a site”, without addressing the question “which are the reasons that make it possible for a work of architecture to create a place”. This omission is often the reason for an indiscriminate recourse to paradigms belonging to other disciplines. Thus, the architect who manipulates the landscape not only builds above the earth but modifies it through excavations, the architect in charge of great infrastructures seeks the relationship with the ground in a different dimension, the architect-geographer mediates between different morphological situations. What is missing, instead, is an explicit and fruitful work of disciplinary crossbreeding with land art and its interest to the quality of materials and transformations due to the climatic and seasonal changes.


Somewhere in between the two questions hereby posed, the hypothesis guiding the research project is that it is possible, other the necessary, to set up a sort of repertoire of elementary topographical conditions and that this operation would serve in a better understanding of how each of them is transformed in a grammar of transmissible design actions and not only related to individual sensibility. The lexicon is the intellectual tools that tries to do this.

CULTURAL COMMITTEE_NEW POSITIONS

After last year’s success with the start of the lecture series and exhibitions, the Department of Architecture opens new positions within its CULTURE COMITTEE.

We think that the life of the school and the learning process, has a crucial role beyond the teaching ours and the walls of the faculty building. There are lots of things to discover and to learn from, many to show to the Kigali’s architectural landscape and its cultural scene.

As protagonists of your own learning you are asked to participate and promote the cultural activities of your Department. Organize lectures and exhibitions, promoting the culture to your colleagues and friends and building up a student’s task force is expected from you. To reach the excellence of the Department and to create a network of knowledge that will benefit you and the future promotions of Rwandan architects. Managing and organizing lectures, exhibitions, and social networks, being exposed to guests and professional lecturers would benefit you and your careers.

For this purpose the students composing the culture committee will restart the LECTURE SERIES every Friday at 15.00pm, and the ARCBOX EXHIBITIONS. The ARCBLOG will serve as a window to our faculty work and growth and also as a tool to learn from the architectural world in general: publish articles and the work that is being done within our faculty and in the architectural world in general. This year we will start as well with a CINEMA FORUM every Tuesday at 5.30pm.

NUMBER OF POSITIONS:

16 (4 for each year

Revision of existing positions: 9 existing for 2nd to 4th year students.

New positions: 4 students from first year.

ESTIMATED HOURS PER WEEK: 2-3

POSITION OPEN TO: all grades students.

SCHEDULE : Meetings: every Tuesday from 12.00-to 14.00 at ARC staff office

C1_Lecture series: Every Friday

C2_Arcbox exhibitions: Every one or two weeks

C3_Arcblog

C4_Cinema

DESCRIPTION OF DUTIES: Students will make themselves available outside of normal class hours to assist in lectures, exhibitions, arrangement and update of the architectural blog and cinema series. A minimal amount of clerical duties (scanning, making photocopies, collecting drawings from students or guests, etc.) may be required. Additional duties may arise, but anything added will not exceed a workload of 3 hours per week. All students are expected to meet once weekly to organize themselves and additional work will be distributed in order to prepare lectures and exhibitions on time.

The existing positions will be revised in order to promote the good work and improve the CULTURAL COMITTEE with those committed and excited with the work.

APPLICATION REQUIREMENTS: Submit a BRIEF STATEMENT OF INTEREST to arcbox.LS@gmail.com.

DEADLINE POSTPONED: FRIDAY, DECEMBER 9, 5pm. APPLY NOW!













Please join us for the FAED Department of Architecture Exhibition celebrating our achievements during the year 2011.
We welcome our external examiner Dr. Omenya from Kenya. Coinciding his visit, we have decided to host a Career Day in order to share our students’ work with the architecture community of Kigali and beyond.

We are also happy to announce the publication of ARCBOOK 2011.

The opening reception for the Exhibition would be from 4.00pm to 5.00pm on Tuesday, September 20th.

We look forward to seeing you. And thank you for your support for the past year. We could not have done this without you.

MILK KIOSK PROTOTYPES workshop FINAL PRESENTATION

After two weeks of work, this friday the students participating on the workshop will present the outcomes of the urban analysis, the process of the amata and the rituals involved in its consumption, as well as the designs for three different prototypes of mobile or fixed amata kiosks.

The final presentation will take place this friday 16th at 16.30 at FAED building



check out on th eprocess of design:
milkkiosk-prototypes.blogspot.com

WALL WORKS:Structural Patterns workshop FINAL PRESENTATION

This friday, at 3.30 pm the final presentation of the workshop Wall Works: Structural Patterns will take place.

KIST architecture students explored structural, urban and pattern potentials of brick walls.

Please join us at Kimisagara Football for hope center, near by la maison des jeunes this Friday, September 16.

Hope to see you then

public lecture: LEARNT IN TRANSLATION by PETER RICH

Peter Rich Architect's ,and founder partner of Light Earth Designs LLP, balances teaching and producing architecture and at the same time helping to empower a younger generation of architects.

Peter Rich's distinctive body of work is testament to a lifetime of commitment to the creation of a uniquely African architecture. He has learnt form the spatial and aesthetic elements of African tribal settlements. His work has the ability to fuse Modernist principles and local tribal conventions and sensitiveness to material and environment. His practice transmits a deep understanding of context achieved through sustained research and collaboration with communities.

The lecture in relation with the exhibition LEARNT IN TRANSLATION draws on Peter Rich's extensive personal and professional career, through his drawings and travel sketches, models and photographs. Rich's working methodology emphasizes the importance of community engagement and research. Part of this process is intensive observation of people and environments, and documentation of the context for a project through sketching and measured drawings.

Peter Rich's lecture will be held in Esperance's nearly completed 'Football for Hope Centre' at 6pm Monday 12th September 2011.

The centre designed and built by Killian Doherty funded by Architecture for Humanity, will house Esperance's activities within the commity of Kimsagara the most densely populated, disadvantaged area in central Kigali with few opportunities for young people and alarming school dropout rates.

Esperance uses football as a tool for reconciliation, but also to facilitate life skills training and education for Rwandan youth.

Thanks to Esperance, L'Ecole Primaire de Kimisagara, Three Code Construction and FAED lecture series for organising this event
.





THE SECOND YEAR FINAL REVIEW

The final review of the second year’s architecture studio took place onTuesday 23th august.
During this semester the students have spend about 6 weeks rethinking and designing Nyabugogo market.

The presentation was divided in different categories refering to the main concepts of the students. Some students put emphasis on materials and forms while others worked on ground manipulation, negative public spaces, or continuity.

As It’s become a routine there were more than class lecturers to comment the works of the students including Sierra Bainbridge(Head of Department of architecture); third year’s design studio lecturers(Tomà Berlanda , Nerea Amoros Elorduy and Keffa Angwenyi) and first year’s studio lecturers (Yutaka Sho and Christian Benimana).

The Project was a success to students as it was commented during the crits. They worked through challenges in the overall project. The fact that the site was an urban infill incorporating a public space like a market, without forgetting the problem of hawkers and circulation(vehicular or pedestrian) and also taking into account that students came up with solutions to most of those problems was a good and recommendable work.

However, Students were asked to work on their drawing and presentation skills by working together and helping each other to improve one another’s.




After the exams and final reviews of the 2010-2011 year in FAED is time for September sessions’ workshops.

This year three workshops will take place, ranging from the smallest scale of the materiality and the tectonics of a wall; the architectural scale and its relation with the city organization trough a milk kiosk; or the largest urban scale of housing typologies and human settlements.

The workshop called Wall Works –Structure Patterns will be driven by Yutaka Sho, and Michael Beaman, and will focus on designing masonry wall systems that require no mortar, are structurally sound, resist seismic activity, and can accommodate a variety of openings for ventilation, views, circulation, and privacy for urban conditions.

Although the workshop focuses on material and tectonics, students are charged to explore urbanity through the issues including but not limited to scale, connectivity, double sided nature of the wall, visually and programmatic appropriation. The workshop will be held in two parts from 5th to 16th September 2011.

The first part will focus on pattern making through three concepts: tiling, interlocking, and layering. The second part will be an intensive session focused on using these 2 dimensional patterns to design, model and prototype a 3 dimensional wall system using repetitive masonry units. Each student will be supplied with model making materials, and expected to develop their project in 2 and 3 dimensions.

The work produced in this workshop may become the basis for a research seminar with students at the University of Virginia in the spring of 2012 as well as be complied in a publication that examines efficient masonry structural systems.

The milk kiosk prototypes workshop, will be held as well from the 5th to the 16th spetember 2011.

This one will be driven by Kilian Doherty and Nerea Amorós Elorduy with the support and sponsor of Rwanda Works.

This workshop will focus on the design for mobile kiosk prototypes. The goal is to be able to understand a bigger framework of production processes, selling strategies, and market logics, emphasizing their adaptation to the urban scenario and their specific design.

The workshop will be held in two parts. The first part will be an intensive urban understanding. We will focus on site and market analysis specifically on: the existing amata shops, and three general zones within the city where to possibly allocate these kiosks. The students will map and understand daily activities, patterns of movement and processes of production and selling. The second part will be the design of a prototype for a mobile/flexible milk kiosk. The teams will choose the best approach to it depending on lessons learned and the site where they will be working on.

The work produced in this workshop may become the basis for a further design development and real build entities that will work as prototypes for future amata kiosks.

(more info at milkkiosk-prototypes.blogspot.com)

The workshop called Urban and Rural Housing Typologies will take place from Sep 5th to Sep 14th , every day (including weekends)

During this time the students will be invited to partner up with colleagues from University of Arkansas, USA, under the lead of an international team of designers. This Peter Rich, Tim Hall, Korydon Smith as well as Sierra Bainbridge and Tomà Berlanda.

Building upon the research started last year, in the Urban and Rural Settlement Patterns workshop, we will take an alternate approach to the current city master plan. We will be developing urban and architectural proposals that include:

  • exterior public/communal spaces
  • community service spaces, such as schools, churches, and health facilities
  • commercial spaces
  • medium-density domestic spaces for both displaced families and upper-income families
To accomplish this, we will utilize a four-phase process. First, we will explore the “unplanned” settlements of the urban, suburban, and rural environments in/around Kigali in an attempt to understand the social customs, spatial typologies, and construction methods of local Rwandans. Second, we will develop explanatory diagrams, drawings, models, and writings of our observations and interactions. Third, we will utilize this information to develop urban design goals and strategies that draw from the vernacular cultural, material, and spatial landscape.

Finally, we will develop architectural proposals that articulate and exemplify these principles.

The applications are open to participate, we hope those workshops will complement and improve the knowledge that the students learn during the semester, enjoying and enriching the faculty curricula.

THE THIRD YEAR FINAL REVIEW


The third year’s final review took place the 24th august and started at 8.30 AM.
The presentation was divided in morning and afternoon sessions.
During the morning session, the studio greet some external guest to give crits to the students projects; Luca Ginoulhiac from UNICEF Rwanda construction section, Marco Ginoulhiac professor at Faculdade de Arquitectura da Universidade do Porto, Killian Doherty from Architecture for Humanity, Yutaka Sho senior Lecturer at FAED, Sierra Bainbridge acting Head of the department of architecture in FAED, together with the instructors Tomà Berlanda, Nerea Amorós Elorduy and Kefa Angwenyi
For the afternoon session the new external guests were Garret Gantner lecturer at FAED, Ben Hartigan from Mass Group and Bruce Engel from Sharon Davis design studio.
The final reviews were organized in couples, were students with similar projects presented their projects to the guest and colleagues and received the crits and opinions.
The project was Swahili Woodwork Restoration and Exhibition Centre based on the existing model of the Research Institute of Swahili Studies of Eastern Africa (RISSEA).
The students were given 3 sites; Piggott place, government square and one adjacent to the cemetery and fort Jesus.
Today Mombasa’s Old Town is suffering from a progressive loss of productive activities. The majority of tourists arrive in Fort Jesus, where they are met by guides which bring them around on a fast paced walking tour, and then leave. They spend little time and money on the ground, thus failing to contribute to the revitalization and preservation of the neighborhood. Simultaneously the pressure by real estate development is pushing the old inhabitants outside of the Old Town. New, market driven, developments are constantly being proposed without any consideration of the history and tradition. With their design, the students have been invited to propose an alternative model for this, a cultural institute which will promote the future of the old town.
After the presentation students, instructors and guests shared a drink together.

FIRST YEAR FINAL REVIEW

The first year’s final review begun cleaning the studio the night before .The next morning ,first group had finished to pin up their work as the guest critics, Soita wambete,Sierra Bainbridge, Garet gantner, and Alicia capelli arrived .They started with two-by-two as they gave them their comments.
As the pin up progressed, the lunch time approached as well .But before we went for lunch, Dancilla,the representative of the COVAGA women weavers, one of the important guests arrived, giving some interesting critiques. After the presentations of a few more couple of groups ,we went for lunch .
The second session began with new guest Killian Doherty, Thomas Berlanda, Nerea Amoros elorduy, as time went on, some of the students that had finished their presentation disappeared and others were busy trying to finish their work in the creative design studio.
After the second session of the presentation, we voted for the top 3 students whose work was better and more comprehensive to be exhibited in the arcbox, within the exhibition “weaving transformations”.
The voting process begun with the students picking the best student from 3 groups thought did the best work, afterwards the lecturers voted as well. Later we all came up with three students: SHYAKA Aziz Farid ,INGABIRE Doren and KARAGIRE Christian .They were chosen as the representative students for our 1st year in architecture 2011 with the project of designing a bus stop for COVAGA in Gashora, Bugesera, Eastern province, which was not as obvious as it could seem.

In brief, the project although at the beginning of the semester, things were not making a lot of sense (how to use and learn from the weaving techniques to come up with a bus stop) as time went on, students learnt a lot from the different weaving techniques.
We really thank our lectures for the great lessons that we had together throughout the entire memorable 1st year of architecture.




This week the final reviews of the architecture design studios will take place, at FAED building.
First year's studio under the theme: Material / Technique / Concept in Space will take place on Monday 22th.
Second year's studio called: Nyabugogo Market Re-envisioned will be helded on Tuesday 23th.
And Third year's travelling studio to Mombasa called: Swahili woodwork restoration and exhibition center will be on Wednesday 24th.

Looking forward to see you all there.

WHAT IS THE VALUE OF DESIGN? MASS Design Group: Public lecture and Exhibition, FRIDAY 19 August 2.00 pm

With a scope of work beyond the purview of most architecture firms, MASS works as a partner with governments, NGOs, private sector firms, and health care experts to bring appropriate, empowering design work and advocacy for typically underserved and under-resourced areas. In this talk, Sierra Bainbridge (MASS Country Director) and Garret Gantner (MASS Project Manager) will discuss a holistic approach to design that seeks to increase the value of the architectural profession through interdisciplinary research, capacity building, and immersion in the field.













Butaro Hospital, Rwanda

ARCHITECT OF THE MONTH

PETER RICH

The South African architect Peter Rich founded Peter Rich architects, on 1973. The studio works to engage the society through architecture, using sustainable designs and local materials. The gross amount of their projects are developed in Africa, from South Africa to Ethiopia or Rwanda.
Their project Mapungubwe Interpretation Centre has been awarded by the 2009 world architecture festival.

Designed to house artifacts from the region´s prehistory, the building connects intimately with an extraordinary veldt site in northern South Africa near the border with Zimbabwe. The complex landscape was both the inspiration for the design and the source of most of the materials for its construction. The heart of the interpretation centre is visually contained by two hollow vaults that evoke the route-markers found in southern African cultures.

Huge vaults are used to construct the billowing forms that expose the arched edges of their thin shells, an analogy of the archaeological revelation of past cultures.

The architecture of the centre responded to vernacular African types, synthesizing forms, materials and light in a nuanced but unsentimental way. The innovative design creates a contemporary building of immense resonance and richness. It is also underpinned by a strong social program, using the skills and labor of local people and involving them in the design and construction process.

Engaging with tradition and modernity, place and people, it offers a different view of architecture as a subversive and poetic force for transformation.Retrieved from: www.worldarchitecturefestival.com

Among the impressive projects they have done, Peter rich architects are now working in the develop of the akumunigo master plan in Kigali, Rwanda.

The Akumunigo housing development has been designed to create the opportunity for the city of Kigali to promote the development of higher density housing through a three storey walk-up design.
The scheme, at four times previous development densities, was developed to demonstrate how housing could be designed to make use of the sloping topography, create meaningful external spaces and respect the pedestrian.

The master plan was inspired by an understanding external space in the Rwandan urban and rural context. The Urubuga
or public open space is expressed in the scheme through semi-public walkways and courtyards, forming a network of external spaces that structure the development. The design therefore respects Rwandan tradition by incorporating this culturally cherished private courtyard within the layout. retrieved from: www.peterricharchitects.co.za

The firm has scooped the contract to design a “white house” for Rwanda, which will be a home to President Paul Kagame and all future heads of state. The presidential residence would be so iconic that is likely to appear on future Rwandan bank notes. Retrieved from: www.architectafrica.com




Peter Rich and some of his sketches of Rwanda www.peterricharchitects.co.za


Drawing of Mapungubwe interpretaion center www.peterricharchitects.co.za
Mapungubwe interpretation center www.peterricharchitects.co.za


Mapungubwe interpretation center www.peterricharchitects.co.za

BUILDING WITH EARTH: LA VOÛTE NUBIENNE

Next week, on Wednesday 10 August, at 15.00hs the arcbox lecture series will host a public lecture about earth and sustainable techniques of building.

The organization, La Voûte Nubienne is currently working on a project for Gardens for health near by Kigali, during the month of August. The guests are going to explain us the traditional technique of the nubbian vault and how it is applied all over the world.

We hope to see you there.


Images retrieved from: www.lavoutenubienne.org