ArchiWEB Explorer: Africa

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Durban heritage museum scoops top prize in inaugural Africa Architecture Awards

A museum in coastal South African city Durban has been named best new building in Africa, in the continent's inaugural architecture awards. Read more

Incredible Grain Silo Transformation: Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa

[ By SA Rogers in Architecture & Public & Institutional. ]

106 vertical concrete tubes making up a massive disused grain silo in Cape Town, South Africa are sliced and carved from the inside out to produce cathedral-like spaces in this incredible transformation. Architect Thomas Heatherwick and his firm contrasted the cold, aging industrial appearance of the complex with faceted glass and organic shapes for a futuristic looking result, a fittingly monumental setting for the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa (MOCAA), the world’s largest museum dedicated to African contemporary art.

Zeitz MOCAA by Heatherwick Studio | Museums

Since the 1920s, the prominent grain silo on Cape Town’s stored and graded corn from all over South Africa. After it was decommissioned in the 1990s its owners, the Victoria & Alfred Waterfront, approached the studio to develop ideas for adapting the silo and its site. Although the waterfront was already a vibrant area, it lacked a major cultural institution. At the same time, the Zeitz Foundation was seeking a new permanent home for their collection of contemporary art from Africa and it’s diaspora. The two programmes coincided, and it was decided that the grain silo would be transformed into a new museum for contemporary art from Africa and its diaspora. Though the concrete building looks like a single structure, it is composed of two parts: a grading tower and forty-two tall, cellular silos. The main challenge was to convert these tightly packed concrete tubes into spaces suitable for displaying art while retaining the building’s industrial heritage. We developed a concept to ca… continue

100% TIERRA – Curso de Construcción en Tierra

De martes a viernes, desde el 14 al 31 de enero de 2014, se realizarán los Cursos de Verano “100% TIERRA” organizados por la Escuela de Construcción en Tierra ECoT en Santiago de Chile.

En los cursos se trabajará a través de herramientas teóricas y de experimentación práctica, donde se introducirá la tierra como material de construcción y diferentes técnicas constructivas anti-sísmicas, entregando herramientas de comprensión y concepción de la construcción en tierra a los estudiantes. Se espera producir un proceso de desarrollo e investigación en el reconocimiento de las características del material y en su aplicación en las diferentes situaciones, contextos y lugares.

Los cursos están destinados a todos los interesados por el tema de la construcción en tierra que deseen adquirir una formación específica ampliando y profundizando sus conocimientos en esta áreas. Las motivaciones pueden ser múltiples, la construcción tradicional, sostenible, el patrimonio, la decoración, la innovación, la arquitectura contemporánea, etc. Todos estos temas serán abordados en cada uno de los cursos.


A Soccer Field That Does Double Duty to Produce Clean Drinking Water

pitch: africa, pitch africa, world cup, soccer, Jane Harrison, David Turnbull ,Atopia Research, annenberg foundation, clean water, africa, south africa, soccer, soccer field that can provide clean drinking water, humanitarian design, design for health

Almost one billion people on Earth have no access to clean drinking water, and dirty water and a lack of basic sanitation cause 80% of all disease and kill more people than all forms of violence. Jane Harrison and David Turnbull of Atopia Research have come up with a way to raise awareness around this dire situation by marrying it with one of the world’s most popular sports. Their creation, PITCH: AFRICA, is a soccer field (or pitch) that collects and filters water. The ingenious invention is both a fun place for communities to gather and a way for them to access clean water.

South Africa’s New 96MW PV Plant is the Continent’s Largest Solar Power Facility

south africa, solar power, renewable energy, jasper, pv plant, solar reserve, largest solar

South Africa is a historically coal-hungry nation, producing around 225 million tonnes of the stuff each year. But just two years ago, government leaders pledged to invest an incredible $5.4 billion in renewable energy, and the products of that investment are taking shape. The Jasper PV Project in Kimberly, South Africa, became fully operational in October, and produces enough power to serve an impressive 80,000 homes. It’s now the largest solar power plant in Africa. The better news? It’s soon to be eclipsed by an even bigger facility nearby.