NKA Foundation Announces Winners of Designing for the Arts Housing Competition in Ghana

14:00 - 13 December, 2015
First place: Abode+Abode / Chowdhury Mohammad Junayed, Sheikh Ahsan Ullah Mojumder, and Erum Ahmed, of the Sheikh Ahsan Ulla Mojumder & Associates in Bangladesh. Image Courtesy of NKA Foundation
First place: Abode+Abode / Chowdhury Mohammad Junayed, Sheikh Ahsan Ullah Mojumder, and Erum Ahmed, of the Sheikh Ahsan Ulla Mojumder & Associates in Bangladesh. Image Courtesy of NKA Foundation

NKA Foundation has announced the winners of the 3rd Earth Architecture Competition, Designing for the Arts, in Ghana. The competition called for recent graduates and students of architecture and design to design innovative, modest, and affordable housing for artists that could be built using earth and local materials in Ghana.

The design was required to be a mud house type of about 2,400 square feet for eight to ten users on a plot of 80 by 100 feet in the Abetenim Arts Village, near Kumasi in the Ashanti Region of Ghana. The overall design was designated for use by musicians, theater artists, potters, sculptors, painters, textile artists, designers, writers, or media arts practitioners. Total costs of construction were not to exceed $7,000 USD for materials and labor, not including the land value.

The winners of the competition are:

One Airport Square / Mario Cucinella Architects

03:00 - 24 November, 2015
© Fernando Guerra | FG+SG
© Fernando Guerra | FG+SG

© Fernando Guerra | FG+SG © Fernando Guerra | FG+SG © Fernando Guerra | FG+SG © Fernando Guerra | FG+SG +15

Designing for the Arts: 3rd Earth Architecture Competition

09:40 - 10 October, 2015
3rd Earth Architecture Competition
3rd Earth Architecture Competition

Nka Foundation is issuing a challenge to designers, architects and builders to use their creativity to come up with innovative designs for modest, affordable houses that can be built locally to replace the rural mud house type. The challenge is to design a mud house type of about 2400 sq feet that sleeps 8 to 10 persons to be built on a plot size of 80 x 100 feet. The construction site will be Abetenim Arts Village, near Kumasi in the Ashanti Region of Ghana. The building should be designed for use by either musicians, theatre artists, potters, sculptors, painters, textile artists, designers, writers, or media arts practitioners. Total costs of constructing the design entry must not exceed $7,000 (USD) for materials and labor; land value is excluded from this price point.

Three Winning Schemes Reinvent the African Mud Hut

00:00 - 6 October, 2014
FIRST PRIZE: Sankofa House / M.A.M.O.T.H (France). Image Courtesy of Nka Foundation
FIRST PRIZE: Sankofa House / M.A.M.O.T.H (France). Image Courtesy of Nka Foundation

The Nka Foundation recently challenged young graduates and students of architecture to redesign the African mud hut for Ghana. The result, three designs received top honors for being both functional and beautiful, and will now be realized through a series of building workshops that you can participate in. Learn more and check out the winning designs, after the break.

How to Re-Invent the African Mud Hut

00:00 - 2 November, 2012
Courtesy of Nka Foundation
Courtesy of Nka Foundation

It’s not often that a project requires you to bulk up on your haggling skills.

Then again, it’s not often that a project requires you to re-invent the African Mud Hut either. But that was exactly the task presented to Karolina and Wayne Switzer, participants of the Nka Foundation’s “10x10 Shelter Challenge” to design and build a 10 by 10 feet shelter deep in the heart of Ghana. 

The pair, who just completed their project this month, were dependent upon the local community to make the shelter a reality, and had to learn early on how to communicate with the locals - not just to negotiate prices for materials and labor, but to overcome the local stigma associated with mud architecture (usually only used by the very poor). 

The result was a contemporary, durable shelter built with a construction method inspired by local tradition: the pounding of the fufu root, a diet staple for the community, which uncannily paralleled the pounding of fresh soil into the forms. Hence the local’s name for the structure: “Obruni fufu” (white man’s fufu). 

If you’re interested in getting involved in the 10x10 Challenge (open to students and graduates of design, architecture, art, or engineering, until October 2013), check out the Nka Foundation’s website, www.nkafoundation.org, or email at info@nkafoundation.org 

Full description of the project, after the break....