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Explore the Land of the Upright People in Grant Smith's "Upright and Educated"

Explore the Land of the Upright People in Grant Smith's "Upright and Educated"

Through January 31, The Building Centre is hosting Upright and Educated, a photographic exhibition documenting the work of UK charitable organization Article 25 in Burkina Faso. Captured by award-winning photographer Grant Smith, the images chart the construction and use of a school in Gourcy, in the country's north.

Founded in 2006, Article 25 worked with local builders, craftspeople, and fellow UK charity Giving Africa to construct Bethel Secondary School, allowing up to 1100 children access to enhanced education and vocational training facilities. Learn more about the project and view selected images from the exhibition after the break.

© Grant Smith© Grant Smith© Grant Smith© Grant Smith+ 5

© Grant Smith
© Grant Smith

Article 25's team of volunteer architects combined local materials with modern forms and construction techniques, equipping Bethel Secondary School for Burkina Faso's semi-arid climate and high temperatures. Landscaping is oriented towards the provision of shading and outdoor learning, while an on-site water pump provides a valuable community resource to the wider township of Gourcy.

© Grant Smith
© Grant Smith

Burkina Faso is known as the "the land of the upright people," a name evocative of the sense of resilience and vibrancy reflected in Upright and Educated. "Bethel school was a challenge to photograph," said photographer Grant Smith, "The harsh sun, which is directly overhead all day, provides neither contrast nor discernible shadow." In spite of these challenges, Australian-born Smith has produced a collection of photographs that is at once playful and respectful, providing unique insight into a thriving Burkinabé community.

© Grant Smith
© Grant Smith

Smith is known for a diverse body of work spanning the fields of design, architecture, and engineering, with Upright and Educated demonstrating that he is as adept at capturing humanity as he is iconic structures. "It was a great privilege to photograph the students enjoying their new school and experience the generosity of the Burkinabé people," he said.

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Cite: "Explore the Land of the Upright People in Grant Smith's "Upright and Educated"" 18 Jan 2015. ArchDaily. Accessed . <https://www.archdaily.com/588706/explore-the-land-of-the-upright-people-in-grant-smith-s-upright-and-educated> ISSN 0719-8884
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