Making a Case for the Renaissance of Traditional African Architecture

Last September, Nigerian Afrobeat musician Wizkid played to a sold-out house at the Royal Albert Hall in London, joining a growing list of illustrious African musicians, such as Selif Kaita, Youssou Ndour, Miriam Makeba and others, that have performed at that prestigious venue. This event affirmed the unfolding cultural renaissance across the continent, but it also signified the rising global i...

Denis Hurley Centre / Ruben Reddy Architects

Located in the vibrant city centre of Durban, South Africa, a few steps from Warwick Triangle and close to several liberation heritage sites such as the Juma Musjid (Mosque) the Denis Hurley Centre was conceived as a contemporary facility to uplift and serve the community - a welcoming refuge to all, regardless of background, faith or nationality. 

Focus : Hassan Fathy

Hassan Fathy is the default setting for social housing in architecture. He was the epitome of sustainable no pretence living, a man whose life and work spoke more to people within his community than perhaps any other architect in the world. It is perhaps with this mindset that archiDATUM launches the inaugural Series where we will FOCUS on the architects in Africa that are larger than their work.

Christian Benimana on The Next Generation Of African Architects And Designers

Christian Benimana wants to build a network of architects who can help Africa's booming cities flourish in sustainable, equitable ways -- balancing growth with values that are uniquely African. From Nigeria to Burkina Faso and beyond, he shares examples of architecture bringing communities together. A pan-African movement of architects, designers and engineers on the continent and in diaspora a...

The Ecomo Home / Pietro Russo

The ecomo home is a compact home designed for modern, simple living in collaboration with nature. The design is based on basic sustainable, green design principles. The ecomo home offers a low-maintenance, modern, well-designed green housing alternative.

House Gauché / Earthworld Architects and Interiors

The House is situated in one of Pretoria's oldest Golf Estates, which has already been extensively developed. Our client was particularly open-minded in buying one of the last open plots in the estate, an extremely rocky piece of ground not many would see opportunity in.

Terra Lodge Hotel / Ramos Castellano Arquitectos

In the middle of the Atlantic ocean, in the island of Sao Vicente, in a dry windy island where only rain in August. A France trekking guide decides to build his own hotel for the incoming tourists that want to go trekking in the nearest mountain island of Santo Antao.

Right-Side Down / Oualalou+Choi

The pavilion of morocco at the 14th Venice Biennale focused on territorial speculations in the Sahara: “inhabiting the uninhabitable.” The Sahara, with its extreme geography and climatic conditions, remains an unexplored territory for architectural speculation. We proposed an urban structure for this territory, a means of putting down roots, implanting urbanity and civilization.

Rehabilitation Of Four Caravansérail Of Fès Medina / Oualalou+Choi

The Medina of Fez constitutes an outstanding example of a medieval town created during the very first centuries of Islamisation of Morocco and presenting an original type of human settlement and traditional occupation of the land representative of Moroccan urban culture over a long historical period. The Medina of Fez bears a living witness to a nourishing city of the eastern Mediterranean havi...

Urban Patios / Pedro Sousa

The Angolan urban patios explore the home as a city and the city as a home. Architecture and a city are different manifestations of the same theme. The city isn’t simply the reunion of buildings or houses; it is a big and complex building.

Mass Design Group's Documentary Made In Ilima Premieres at Architecture and Design Film Festival

On Friday, November 3rd 2017 at 9:00pm, MASS premiered a new feature-length documentary film titled Made in Ilima at the Architecture and Design Film Festival (ADFF)in New York City.In the center of Equator Province in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the Ilima community remains one of the most isolated in the world. They have coexisted with endangered wildlife in their surrounding forest ...

African Modernism Exhibition at Shifteye Gallery Studios Nairobi by Manuel Herz

Manuel Herz was in Nairobi early last month to open the exhibition based on his book, African Modernism, to over 100 architects and artists who showed up. The organisers, the University of Nairobi and Goethe Institute Nairobi gave the opening remarks before Manuel Herz gave his informative lecture.

Antonio Esposito Reimagines the New City Of Mengomeyene In Equatorial Guinea With A Series Of Elaborate Graphics

In this set of hand drawings, Antonio Esposito reimagines the city of Mengomeyene in a series of Graphic images for the foundation plan of the new city in Equatorial Guinea.

Lycée Schorge Secondary School / Kere Architecture

Located in the third most populated city in Burkina Faso, the Lycée Schorge Secondary School not only sets a new standard for educational excellence in the region, it also provides a source of inspiration by showcasing locally-sourced building materials in an innovative and modern way.

UJ GSA Lecture Series: David Adjaye on Unlearning Everything and Redoing it Again

David Adjaye explored a returning to the renaissance in African architecture yesterday at the University of Johannesburg Graduate School of Architecture in an engaging heart to heart with Lesley Lokko where he implored upon the need to radically explore architecture from always the new rather than projecting upon them before the actual solution, deeper meaning or discussion of the situation is ...

Anura Vineyard New Events Venue / Inhouse Brand Architects

Anura Vineyards, a breathtaking wine farm situated in the Cape Winelands, has revealed ‘spankingly’ modern interiors for its new events venue. Nestled between the towns of Paarl and Stellenbosch, this venue provides more than just idyllic surroundings and award-winning wines – it offers a contemporary design direction in a landscape usually associated with traditional architecture…

A Studio - A Tree House / Phillip Lühl + Nina Maritz Architects

The idea for this tiny studio of about 35 usable square meters was born out of its spectacular setting. The incredibly dense garden is home to everything from porcupines to guinea fowl and slopes down steeply to the dry ravine beyond. The clients’ insistence that no single tree may be cut required an unconventional approach. The only buildable space available was a 3 x 3m storeroom between the ...

Sasol Place / Paragon Architects

The new Sasol corporate office on Katherine Street brings together all 6000 staff members from its eleven satellite offices into one office space. The building leaps the boundary of the commercial edge of Sandton to hover as a floating glass box above an indigenous parkland.

Refilwe Business Node Upgrades / Holm Jordaan Architects and Urban Designers

Refilwe nodal transformation forms part of an urban network of upgrades supported by the Neighbourhood Development Partnerships Grant, National Treasury, in the Metsweding area, City of Tshwane. This upgrade albeit a small and humble urban intervention, serves as an example of a local community taking great pride in the renewal of public space.

Mohammed VI Polytechnic University / Ricardo Bofill Taller Architects

As a result of an international competition, the group OCP, a global leader in phosphates extraction and transformation, commissioned in 2011 the design of the campus for the Mohammed VI Polytechnic University to RBTA. Extending over approximately 55 hectares, the Campus for Mohammed VI Polytechnic University is the milestone of the ambitious scheme for the Mohammed VI Green City, a sustainable...

Ghana Ridge Hospital / Perkins + Will

Global architectural and design firm Perkins+Will adds to its award-winning healthcare portfolio with the design of the new 465,560 square foot (43,252 square meter) Ghana Ridge Hospital. The Government of Ghana selected the design-build team of Perkins+Will and Americaribe to create a new state-of-the-art hospital that will support the growing needs of the fast developing African country. This...

Department of International Relations and Cooperation / TC Design Architects

Completed in just 24 months from the start of construction in May 2007, the DIRCO project involved bringing an unusually eclectic, asymmetrical design to reality. The importance of the building’s aesthetic appearance meant that innovative engineering solutions had to be developed for even simple structures.

Alice Lane Phase 1 Marsh / Paragon Architects

The design of this building formed the last important piece of an urban puzzle. The volumes of the building needed to terminate views on the piazza design. It needed to allow a transparent view through the building’s punched views with gardens but also defining the edge without killing the piazza’s relationship with the sky or the views. The building was awarded Best Commercial Building at the ...

Changing Skyline: What Western Architects Can Learn From Africa

In this article originally published in the Philly, Inga Saffron, an architectural critic, looks at the influence of Francis Kéré on sustainable community architecture and skill building and how it has reverberated in Western countries with similar excitement surfacing in different forms within Africa and the rest of the world.had to travel long and far from his tiny farming village in Burkina ...

How The Queen of Curves Zaha Hadid Touched Africa

ArchiDATUM particularly focuses on Zaha Hadid’s influence on Architectural landscape in Africa. Albeit concentrated to Egypt and Morocco and all of thes projects only proposals, Zaha Hadid’s buildings perhaps show her courage and beauty under any circumstance. The Pritzker Prize-winning architect carried with her the same tenacity and magnanimous altruism in all her projects regardless of geogr...

Lake Muhazi Gahini Church / Light Earth Designs

As I shake Peter Rich's hand and ask him whether he is now retired, he smirks and stares back almost semi insulted "I'm too young. I am just starting." And looking at his impeccable sustainable portfolio of architecture you can see why he is just starting. The Anglican Church just North of Kigali in Rwanda perhaps speaks to that metamorphosis form one technological advancement to the next while...

The Preschool of Aknaibich / BC Architects and Studies

The Preschool of Aknaibich is only 1 classroom, nevertheless a holistic architectural design, incorporating community dynamics, bioclimatics and a new vernacular style.Aknaibich is a town in transition: the eastern old town is made of earthen constructions, sinusoid roads and narrow alleys, while the western part exists of modern, plot-based concrete houses built by rural-urban emigrants. In ne...

Finding New Inspirations : Modernism Vs Mimicry

The shift from traditionalism to modernism in the mid 19th century resulted from the criticism of traditionalism because of its contradictions of hiding modern building technology with a facade of ornamental traditional styles. At the time, modernists advocated for truth to materiality and construction technology.

Significant Moments that Changed the African Architecture Landscape In 2015

In Africa, the past 12 months has seen significant advancement in the architectural landscape, culture and identity of the continent: 2015 saw the opening of many art shows and architecture events including the Koolhas’ Biennale, the Louisiana happenings and many more. Now we look in pensive discernment at the events and happenings that shaped Africa. These are the seven most impacting events t...

Concorde Kintélé Sports Complex/ PTW Architects

The New Kintélé SportsComplex located in Kintélé; 20km from the capital city Brazzaville was built by a Chinese Company. The sports complex replaced former farmlands and covers over 80 hectares.