mono.kultur 46 / Francis Kéré: Of Clay and Community
In our most colourful issue yet, we step into the life and work of architect Francis Kéré, known in equal measure for his lighthearted and innovative architecture, his remarkable background, and his infectious sense of optimism.
And his path is an extraordinary one: beginning in Gando, a small village in Burkina Faso, and moving all the way to West Berlin in the 1980s, where Kéré would end up studying architecture. His graduation project was the school Gando never had – built in 2001 with the help of the people it was designed for, the village community. It was also the starting point for his own practice that celebrates architecture as a fundamentally social act.
Since then, Kéré has completed numerous projects both in Africa and beyond, including the renowned annual Serpentine Pavilion in 2017. Frequently relying on local materials and infrastructure, his work is marked by a profound simplicity and refreshing lightness, meeting technical problems with surprising and seemingly effortless solutions. It reflects his attitude that architecture should, in its most primary function, seek to improve the lives of the people who inhabit it.
With mono.kultur, Francis Kéré talked about his long trajectory from a remote village in Africa to Berlin, his steadfast belief in optimism, and what makes a tree a perfect piece of architecture.
Interview by Fiona Shipwright / Works by Kéré Architecture / Design by ulie Gayard/jutojo
48 Pages / 34 plates with works by Joseph Kéré Architecture / Printed on six different stocks of paper / In English
mono.kultur is an independent interview series based in Berlin. Our concept is as simple as it is elegant: one artist / one conversation / one issue. No more, no less. And so each publication is dedicated exclusively and entirely to one artist, edited with care and in close collaboration with the artist. Each issue is redesigned entirely around the artist and their work.
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