Inspired by the art of the Konso people of Ethiopia.
What inspired you to enter this special competition to create a modern architectural language for Africa?
Our Africa is a continent with unparalleled cultural richness and stories to be told. However, what we are witnessing today is only the smallest fraction of the vast potential we have got. So much resource just sitting by, time moving fast and we seem to be stuck in the present while the whole world speeding pass by us. Instead of laying back and complaining we took it upon ourselves to do something about it – design the Africa we want to live in – one house at a time. And fortunately enough, the CPDI Africa Competition proved to be just what we needed.
Why do you believe African homeowners will be interested in building a home such as the one you have submitted today?
If we put our minds to it, clients would not only consider opting for such African themed realization but also favor them than any other ill-fitting imported design. Moreover, it less costly to both construct and maintain, it grants a good air circulation and heating system which considerably minimizes the overall embodied energy of the housing unit. However, the most important reason why homeowners would choose our design is because it is design according to the communal need (both intra and inter family) of the dwellers.
What did you find most interesting or challenging during the research and development of your prototype?
Once started - there is such an abundance of integrate systems and design solutions that we researched of the Konso people, it was first hard to decide which aspects to choose and describe in the narrative. We think that the biggest challenge of the project, but also of most of the work we do today, is to find a contemporary material language, that provides all the aspect of modern technology we want to involve, yet also be independent from exporters or governmental regulations. We believe to research into Self-made, sustainable and foremost local materials other than concrete and aluminum windows, our designs can shine brighter and can give comfort and living quality.
Mauser, Julia; Solomon, Girum; and Terefe, Minasie
ATL: Vol. 1:
1, Article 21.
Available at: https://digitalcommons.kennesaw.edu/atl/vol1/iss1/21