Despite not having an office, using a computer or drawing on paper, Bolivian architect Freddy Mamani Silvestre and his firm have completed over 60 projects in El Alto, the highest city in the world. Like most of his clients and fellow citizens, Mamani is an Aymara and his work is typified by its highly detailed, colourful facades, inspired by Aymara dress. In light of his visually exciting, daring work, The New Yorker has released a stunning photo portfolio by Peter Granser, with an introduction by Judith Thurman, showcasing some of Mamani's colourful projects.
With the population and economy of El Alto growing in the past 20 years, Mamani has found a living building mixed-use homes for the newly-rich of the city, with shop fronts, party halls, apartments and an owner’s penthouse all accommodated in the mixed-use projects. The circular motifs of his interiors are reminiscent of Aymara weaving and ceramics, and their stepping patterns reference Andean Temples. Yet at the same time Mamani draws inspiration from science fiction, and especially from the Transformer movies. Read the full story about Mamani in the New Yorker and view the complete curated selection of his work here.
News via the New Yorker, with photos by Peter Granser and introduction by Judith Thurman.