She is an architect and a scholar with experience in the field of public spaces, the right to the city and African urbanism. After working as Senior Lecturer in urban design at the University of Rwanda she joined Wits as a post-doc fellow working on public spaces in Africa.
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Reporting from the Front: Architecture and Society at the 15th International Architecture Exhibition
The 15th International Architecture Exhibition titled “Reporting from the front” aims at reconnecting architecture to society and re-evaluating its mandate of improving people’s quality of life. As the the President of La Biennale, Paolo Baratta, said we should not merely consider architecture the manifestation of a formal style, but rather as “an instrument of self-government, of humanist civilization”
This Biennale attempts to bring concepts, logics, processes, and projects capable of responding to the human condition by making a real difference in people’s life – not just at the physical and functional level, but also addressing intangible needs.
The appointment of the Chilean architect Alejandro Aravena – best known for the incremental housing model and projects – as the curator of the exhibition has allowed the participation of a broader variety of projects and designers. Un-known architects and ‘down to earth projects’, often more relevant for their socio-political and economic impact than their aesthetic values, reached Venice and the international stage.
By presenting some of these projects, I would like to share with students, scholars and teachers how designers across the world have addressed some of the most crucial themes traversing the Biennale, particularly inequalities, peripheries, housing shortage, migration, informality, and participation of communities.
Whether the projects fulfilled or not the exhibition rational, the current Biennale offers the opportunity to reflect on the meaning of architecture and on the ethics of the profession and education in this rapidly urbanising world of increasing inequities, environmental challenges and profound cultural transformations.