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Architecture and Race: The Latest Architecture and News

Urbanism with a Gender Perspective: 7 Guidelines for the Design of Public Spaces in Buenos Aires

Understanding the diversity and plurality of people who inhabit and pass through cities on a daily basis, gender-responsive urban planning aims to incorporate all those identities, perspectives and activities that have been invisible for years. Understanding the complexities that surround cities and getting involved in the urban experiences of their inhabitants, public spaces turn out to be the scenario for the development of urban life and, as such, should bring together a series of guidelines and considerations in accordance with this new paradigm that act as planning tools, composing this network of spaces and contemplating all the users of the city.

Fantasies of Whiteness

At the inauguration of the First Brazilian Congress of Eugenics in July of 1929, the physician and anthropologist Edgar Roquette-Pinto addressed an audience preoccupied with the question of how a country as vast as Brazil could best increase and improve its population. To accomplish this, Roquette-Pinto exalted “eugenia” as the new science that, together with medicine and hygiene, would guarantee the efficiency and perfection of the race. With the following words, the Brazilian scientist underscored a positivist agenda that brought architecture to the very core of the eugenics—the so-called science of race “improvement”—movement: “It is critical to emphasize that the influence [on our race] does not stem from the natural environment but rather from the artificial environment, created by man.” With these opening remarks to the Congress, Roquette-Pinto called attention to the crucial role that the man-made environment plays in the “amelioration” of what he called “the biological patrimony” of Brazil’s diverse population. In his invitation to social engineering, Roquette Pinto pointed to the environmental-genetic collusion that they hoped would bring with it the very possibility of progress.

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"I Grew Up Where Architecture Was Designed to Oppress": Wandile Mthiyane on Social Impact and Learning from South Africa

Design justice is grounded in personal experience and built through everyday actions. Wandile Mthiyane is an architectural designer that embodies this idea, an activist that grew up in Durban, South Africa during the Apartheid. From an early age he was drawn to building and design, a background directly tied to his childhood. He realized he wanted to build a better future by working to undo the architectural effects of institutionalized racial segregation. Today, Wandile has become recognized for creating social impact, including his work to transform his hometown of Durban.

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Femingas: Participatory Construction with a Gender Perspective in Ecuador

In the field of design and construction, the question of gender is a point of conflict: who has the possibility of building? What are the alternatives for us architecture professionals? These are the questions that Taller General (re)think about. It is from these questions that Femingas, a participatory construction conference with a gender perspective, arose. These are manifested as an alternative to the construction of "mingas", days of joint work between the members of a community to achieve a common good.

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What is Design Justice?

What is Design Justice? - Featured Image
Asentamiento de Kya Sands en Johannesburgo, Sudáfrica. Photo © Johnny Miller Fotografía

Design Justice is a branch of architecture and design focused on redesigning cities, products, services and environments with historic reparations in mind.

The term emerged about 7 years ago when debates and dialogues about inclusion and diversity in spaces started to get stronger, creating movements that fought for the rights of people who had their roots and choices denied in society.

Spatial Education and the Future of African Cities: An Interview with Matri-Archi

Led by architectural designers Khensani de Klerk and Solange Mbanefo, Matri-Archi is a collective based between Switzerland and South Africa that aims to bring African women together for the development of spatial education in African cities. Through design practice, writing, podcasts, and other initiatives, Matri-Archi — one of ArchDaily's Best New Practices of 2021 — focuses on the recognition and empowerment of women in the spatial field and architectural industry.

ArchDaily had the opportunity to talk to the co-directors of the collective on hegemonic space, informal architecture, technology, local idiosyncrasies, and the future of African and global cities. Read the full interview below.

Who Has Won the Pritzker Prize?

The Pritzker Prize is the most important award in the field of architecture, awarded to a living architect whose built work "has produced consistent and significant contributions to humanity through the art of architecture." The Prize rewards individuals, not entire offices, as took place in 2000 (when the jury selected Rem Koolhaas instead of his firm OMA) or in 2016 (with Alejandro Aravena selected instead of Elemental); however, the prize can also be awarded to multiple individuals working together, as took place in 2001 (Herzog & de Meuron), 2010 (Kazuyo Sejima and Ryue Nishizawa of SANAA), and 2017 (Rafael Aranda, Carme Pigem, and Ramon Vilalta of RCR Arquitectes).

Mapping Improvisation: The Role of Call and Response in Urban Planning

Mapping Improvisation: The Role of Call and Response in Urban Planning - Featured Image
Congo Square, E.W. Kemble. Image

This article was originally published on Common Edge.

New Orleans was designed by its early settlers in 1721 as a Cartesian grid. You know it as the famous French Quarter or Vieux Carré. Such grids are named for the Cartesian coordinate system we learned to use in algebra or geometry class, perpendicular X and Y axes, used to measure units of distance on a plane. The invention of René Descartes (1596–1650), these grids reflect his rationalism, the view that reason, not embodied or empirical experience, is the only source and certain test of knowledge. William Penn used a similar grid in 1682 in selling Philadelphia as an urban paradise where industry would thrive in the newly settled wilderness. And just as the massive buildings of Italian Rationalist (i.e., Fascist) architecture express authoritarian control, so, too, Cartesian grids implicitly say: Someone is in charge here. We’ve got this. Trust us.

Lesley Lokko Appointed Curator of the 18th International Architecture Exhibition - La Biennale di Venezia

The Board of La Biennale di Venezia, has appointed Ghanaian-Scottish architect, academic, and novelist Lesley Lokko as Curator of the 18th International Architecture Exhibition - La Biennale di Venezia. The 18th International Architecture Exhibition will be held from Saturday 20 May to Sunday 26 November, 2023.

“Universal Representation Is Utopian”: Erica Malunguinho Talks About Urban Equity

When crossing a space, a body carries within it many meanings. The reading that translates into this person-architecture dialogue, and the sensations that arise from it, demonstrate much of the social inequality and violent structures intrinsic to the Western imagination, which privileges the same standard: the white man. Finding a place of rebalancing in which it is possible to create an alternation of power —in race and gender - is a commitment by Erica Malunguinho.

Germane Barnes Wins 2021 Wheelwright Prize

Germane Barnes has won the 2021 Wheelwright Prize from Harvard University Graduate School of Design. The $100,000 prize will fund two years of travel and research for Barnes’s proposal Anatomical Transformations in Classical Architecture, an examination of classical Roman and Italian architecture through the lens of non-white constructors. Barnes will study how spaces have been transformed through the material contributions of the African Diaspora while creating new possibilities within investigations of Blackness.

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