African Architecture Subject Of Major Exhibition At Copenhagen’s Louisiana Museum

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The operate of architects such as Diébédo Francis Kéré, Heinrich Wolff and SelgasCano functions in a new exhibition about African design open the Louisiana Museum of Contemporary Artwork in Copenhagen .

The demonstrate – titled Africa: Architecture, Culture and Identity – is a main survey of architecture and design and style in Sub-Saharan Africa, which encompasses 49 nations south of the Sahara Desert.

Structure by SelgasCano. Photograph by Kim Hansen Framework by SelgasCano. Photograph by Kim Hansen

The exhibition attributes architectural designs, photography, movies, and other visual material, along with many massive-scale installations. The demonstrate is divided into seven themes, ranging from “belonging” to “making room”.

“Through a number of projects spread in excess of the African continent, the exhibition tells a story of the new architecture of distinct areas – with its a variety of proposals for accommodating neighborhood traditions, strengthen the present ones and generate remedies for the future,” explained the Danish museum.

Structure by SelgasCano. Photograph by Kim Hansen Construction by SelgasCano. Photograph by Kim Hansen

In the museum’s sculpture park, SelgasCano – the Spanish firm behind this year’s Serpentine Pavilion in London – has developed an enclosure created of colourful poles and plastic sheets. Following the exhibition closes, the framework will be moved to Kibera, Nairobi, where it will serve as an informal college.


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The youthful Namibian architects Mieke Droomer and Andre Christensen have also erected an installation in the park – a curving fence manufactured of rough-hewn wooden posts. The set up resembles the duo’s Dordabis Neighborhood Spine project in Namibia, created with Wasserfall Munting Architects.

Louisiana Spine installation by Mieke Droomer and Andre Christensen. Photograph by Kim Hansen Louisiana Spine set up by Mieke Droomer and Andre Christensen. Photograph by Kim Hansen

Within the museum, Diébédo Francis Kéré, who grew up in a rural village in Burkina Faso and runs a tiny practice in Berlin, has erected a 90-square-metre installation using light-coloured, locally sourced wood.

Louisiana Spine installation by Mieke Droomer and Andre Christensen. Photograph by Kim Hansen Louisiana Spine installation by Mieke Droomer and Andre Christensen. Photograph by Kim Hansen

Featuring a canopy and seating made of bundled branches and logs from willow trees, the installation takes its cue from developing tactics in Kéré’s homeland.

Louisiana Canopy by Kéré Architecture. Image courtesy of the architects Louisiana Canopy by Kéré Architecture. Image courtesy of the architects

“This architectural set up aims to highlight the value of shading and sheltering as a type of protection from over-exposure to the sun, as effectively as an inherent space-making gadget for local community gathering,” said Kéré Architecture.

Louisiana Canopy by Kéré Architecture. Image courtesy of the architects Louisiana Canopy by Kéré Architecture. Image courtesy of the architects

South African architect Heinrich Wolff has designed and curated the “city” area of the exhibition, making a series of sculptural booths that show materials associated to six different cities: Dakar, Senegal Lagos, Nigeria Nairobi, Kenya Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo Maputo, Mozambique and Johannesburg, South Africa.

Louisiana Canopy by Kéré Architecture. Image courtesy of the architects Louisiana Canopy by Kéré Architecture. Image courtesy of the architects

The “city cells” present utopian visions for the potential, housing projects for the developing middle class, Colonial Era architecture, and other circumstances inside of the urban areas.

Louisiana Canopy by Kéré Architecture. Image courtesy of the architects Louisiana Canopy by Kéré Architecture. Picture courtesy of the architects

“Sub-Saharan Africa is a single of the locations on the planet where the cities are developing most,” mentioned the museum. The picked cities are all ” essential nodal points on the continent and represent a complexity of geography, culture and colonial historical past that is expressed in diverse techniques of living.”

Installation by Active Social Architecture. Photograph by Ulrik Jantzen Set up by Lively Social Architecture. Photograph by Ulrik Jantzen

The “rebuilding” part of the display puts the spotlight on Energetic Social Architecture (ASA), a Rwandan company led by Tomà Berlanda and Nerea Amorós Elorduy. The duo have replicated brick walls that are featured in their low-tech projects back residence.

Installation by Active Social Architecture. Photograph by Ulrik Jantzen Installation by Energetic Social Architecture. Photograph by Ulrik Jantzen

The museum stated it was crucial to consist of perform that reveals how Rwanda has progressed because the country’s 1994 genocide, when above half a million members of the Tutsi tribe have been slaughtered by the bulk Hutu group.

“Even though Rwanda is a single of the smallest nations on the African continent, the nation looms large in the minds of numerous men and women as a outcome of the macabre genocide in 1994,” said the museum. “The paradox is that Rwanda, twenty many years soon after the genocide, is one of the best-working countries on the African continent.”

African-Architecture-Culture-Identity-exhibition_Louisiana-Museum_dezeen_2 Exhibition view. Photograph by Ulrik Jantzen

In the “belonging” area of the exhibition, Ghanaian architect Joe Osae-Addo tells the story of Kente, a classic Ghanaian textile design that features bright colors and a geometric pattern. Osae-Addo is chairman of ArchiAfrica, an organisation that tracks and promotes modern African architecture and culture.

Sculptural area by Heinrich Wolff. Photograph by Ulrik Jantzen Kinshasa: Undertaking for The Third Millenium by Bodys Isek Kingelez. Photograph by Ulrik Jantzen

A multi-coloured model of a metropolis is featured in the “constructing futures” area. Titled “Kinshasa: Project for The Third Millenium,” the piece was developed by the late Congolese artist Bodys Isek Kingelez, who was centered on an artwork kind he called Architectural Modelism.

Makoko Floating School by NLE, 2014. Photograph by Iwan BaanMakoko Floating School by NLE, 2014. Photograph by Iwan Baan

Also on display are photographs, films and artworks, depicting projects including the floating college in Nigeria by NLÉ.

Dano Secondary School, Burkina Faso by Kéré Architecture, 2007. Photograph by Kéré Architecture Dano Secondary College, Burkina Faso by Kéré Architecture, 2007. Photograph by Kéré Architecture

Africa: Architecture, Culture and Identity is open through 25 October 2015. It was organised by Kjeld Kjeldsen and Mathias Ussing Seeberg, each curators at the museum.

Africa Junctions, Oniru Estate, Lagos, Nigeria photographed by Lard Buurman. 2009/2013 Africa Junctions, Oniru Estate, Lagos, Nigeria. Photograph by Lard Buurman, 2009/2013

The show is the third and last in the museum’s Architecture, Culture and Identity exhibition series. In 2012, the institution presented the display New Nordic, and in 2014, it staged an exhibition known as Arab Contemporary.

Independence Square, Accra, Ghana, photographed by Alexia Webster, 2014 Independence Square, Accra, Ghana. Photograph by Alexia Webster, 2014

Vitra Design Museum in Weil am Rhein, Germany, has also mounted an exhibition about African style that is on view by way of 13 September. The Vitra Campus is also presently hosting a pop-up retailer for shoe brand Camper, designed by Kéré.

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