Architect: Diebedo Francis Kere
Place: Gando, Burkina Faso
New Architecture of Social Engagement
The organizers of this show Andres Lepik and Margot Weller used about two years of research to come up with 11 projects from all over the world. Projects that can give us an insight to what can be done and are done architecturally as a "Social Engagement". The show represents the change of focus in architecture as a help in changing the mindset of people and society. The need to use what we have, materials and space for a more environmental and a better public outcome. Teaching the inhabitants to better take care of themselves, and brick by brick building their own school like the project above in Burkina Faso, where 80% are illiterate.
"... We have to help come up with innovative ideas and help conserve resources and therefore help nurture a future free of crisis."
- Diabedo Francis Kere
Meti - Handmade School
Architect: Anna Herringer
Place: Village of Rudrapur, Bangladesh
Or in Bangladesh a school made of earth, clay, sand and straw.
"Imagine then the human ability to build with nothing but the natural material just under our feet - and with our hands..."
- Anna Heringer
Inner City Arts
Architec: Michael Maltzan
Place: Los Angeles California.
The Inner-City Arts complex in L.A. was first an unused garage in the Skid Row neighborhood. It was built in three phases and can be seen as an answer to the cuts that was made against Arts in School. In California 29% of public schools do not offer arts education. Now 10,600 kids takes classes at the Inner-City Arts center every year. What a bright light in a an otherwise unsafe environment.
Housing for the Fishermen of Tyre
Architect: Hashim Sarkis Alud
Place: Tyre, Lebanon
This beautiful project with 93, 2-bedroom apartments is made for the Fishermen of Tyre who earns about 15$ a day. The Greek Orthodox church agreed to donate a parcel outside of the historic city center (the ancient city is on the UNESCO world heritage list) to the fishermen´s Al Baqaa housing cooperative.
With the help of the architect Hashim Sarkis they manage to build a home with their small budget that represents their lifestyle.
Architect: Estudio Teddy Cruz
Place: San Ysidro, California
At the border of the United States and Mexico, between San Diego and Tijuana they are building; "Living Rooms at the Border and Senior Housing with Childcare". What? Senior Housing with Childcare? Is this for real? What a wonderful idea I thought. What better than to age and still have the youngest ones to look at for life and laughter?
This should be an inspiration to many more projects I hope. A great integration in a place where most of us would not even dare to stop our cars. Here they will integrate immigration services, education and job placements as well.
If there were only more of these projects happening, they found about 12 others that could have been represented.. far from what we can wish for. But, seeing this actually happening makes me so incredibly happy and inspired.