Text description provided by the architects. The pavilion design is a befitting expression of the values, ethos, and practice of Pan-African heritage and culture, tenets Bra Hugh advocated for throughout his life. The design is inspired by African burial ritual and practices wherein, dignified structures are created to host family and visitors who periodically gathering to reflect and commune with the departed.
In contrast to placing objects like headstones, enshrined in African cultural spiritual beliefs for honoring the departed, is the process of erecting structures as a gathering place to remember and connect with those who have departed the physical realm, ultimately serving as their ancestors. The perforated pavilion rooftop design, mimics local flora capturing the light and breeze whilst shadows from the canopies of surrounding foliage are reflected across the pavilion floor welcoming visitors old and new.
The base of the pavilion is inscribed with a statement by the Masekela family. The memorial pavilion structure or, lekgotla (‘gathering place’ in Sotho, one of South Africa’s eleven languages) also houses a variety of specially selected stones, representing different parts of the Continent Bra Hugh spent time in whilst in exile.