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Francis Kéré: The Latest Architecture and News

Aga Khan Award for Architecture Reveals 2022 Master Jury

The Palestinian Museum by heneghan peng architects. Image © Iwan Baan
The Palestinian Museum by heneghan peng architects. Image © Iwan Baan

The Aga Khan Award for Architecture announced the Master Jury that will select the 2020-2022 cycle winners. The jury, among which are Anne Lacaton, Francis Kéré, Nader Tehrani, or Amale Andraos, will look for projects that respond to the cultural aspirations of their social context and show innovative use of local resources and building technologies. Founded in 1988 by Aga Khan IV, the award covering three-year cycles aims to highlight projects of relevance and positive impact for Islamic communities.

Wasit Natural Reserve Visitor Centre by X Architects. Image © Nelson GarridoLecture Building at the Alioune Diop University by IDOM. Image © Aga Khan Trust for Culture / Chérif TallPublic Spaces Development Programme, in Kazan by Architecturny Desant Architectural Bureau. Image © Daniel ShvedovWasit Natural Reserve Visitor Centre by X Architects. Image © Nelson Garrido+ 6

"It’s Not Because You Are Limited in Resources That You Should Accept Mediocrity": Interview with Francis Kéré

African architecture has received deserved international attention in the last decade and one of the main responsible for this is, undoubtedly, Diébédo Francis Kéré. Born in Gando, Burkina Faso, Kéré graduated in architecture at the Technische Universität Berlin, in Germany. Today, he maintains branches of his firm, Kéré Architecture, in both countries, through which he seeks to develop works in the "intersection of utopia and pragmatism", exploring the border between Western architecture and local practice.

Known for involving community in the construction process of its buildings, Kéré and his office have developed works that go beyond the conventional limits of architecture and touch on themes such as local economy, migration, culture and equity. We had the pleasure and privilege of talking with the architect about some of his projects and his broader vision on architecture. Read the full interview below.

Anupama Kundoo Receives The 2021 RIBA Charles Jencks Award

The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) and the Jencks Foundation announced renowned Indian architect Anupama Kundoo as the winner of this year's RIBA Charles Jencks Award. The accolade given in recognition of significant contributions to the theory and practice of architecture acknowledges Kundoo's holistic practice that marries theoretical investigations, material research and sustainable building methods.

Residence Kanade . Image © Javier CallejasLibrary of Lost Books. Image © Javier CallejasFullFill Home at Venice Biennale . Image © Javier CallejasSharana Daycare . Image © Javier Callejas+ 6

Paulo Mendes da Rocha Announced as Winner of UIA Gold Medal for Lifetime Achievement

Paulo Mendes da Rocha at Sesc 24 de Maio. Photo: © André Scarpa
Paulo Mendes da Rocha at Sesc 24 de Maio. Photo: © André Scarpa

The International Union of Architects (UIA) has announced the UIA Gold Medal and Prizes winners. The UIA Gold Medal is awarded to Brazilian architect Paulo Mendes da Rocha, president of the 27th UIA World Congress of Architects — UIA2021RIO Honour Committee. The architect will also participate in a keynote speakers session programmed for July.

Paulo Mendes da Rocha, now 92 years old, has been honored with important awards, such as the Pritzker Prize in 2006, considered to be one of the world's premier architecture prizes, and the Venice Biennale Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement, in 2016. Mendes da Rocha was the first Brazilian to be awarded this prize.

Francis Kéré Receives the 2021 Thomas Jefferson Foundation Medal in Architecture

Founder of the Berlin-based firm Kéré Architecture, Francis Kéré, has won the 2021 Thomas Jefferson Foundation Medal in Architecture. Presented by the University of Virginia and the Thomas Jefferson Foundation at Monticello, the award is one of four honors recognizing achievements in architecture, citizen leaderships, global innovation, and law. The Thomas Jefferson Foundation Medals recognize the exemplary contributions of recipients to the endeavors in which Jefferson excelled and held in high regard.

Serpentine Pavilion 2017, designed by Francis Kéré.. Image © Iwan BaanXylem Pavilion / Kéré Architecture. Image © Iwan BaanPrimary School in Gando Extension. Image Courtesy of Kéré ArchitectureBenin's National Assembly in Porto-Novo Proposal. Image Courtesy of Kéré Architecture+ 12

Kéré Architecture Proposes New Design for Benin's National Assembly in Porto-Novo

Kéré Architecture has unveiled first images of its proposal for the Benin National Assembly. Located in Porto-Novo, in the Republic of Benin, the Parliament House has been commissioned by the Ministry of Living Environment and Sustainable Development, and has been in the design phase from 2018 till 2020. Portraying the values of democracy and the cultural identity of the citizens, the project is set for construction in March 2021.

Courtesy of Kéré ArchitectureCourtesy of Kéré ArchitectureCourtesy of Kéré ArchitectureCourtesy of Kéré Architecture+ 21

Francis Kéré: "I Am Privileged to Be Able to Serve My Community"

As part of our partnership with the 27th World Congress of Architects, we are sharing here an interview with architect Francis Kéré, a speaker confirmed for the UIA2021RIO, conducted by architect Miguel Pinto Guimarães.

Rethinking History: New Architecture in Burkina Faso

The history and architecture of Burkina Faso is tied to its landscape. As a landlocked country in western Africa, it occupies an extensive plateau with grassy savannas and sparse forests. More than two-thirds of the people live in rural villages, and as such, the country’s modern architecture is the product of ingenuity born from reimagining traditional building materials and techniques.

© Giovanni Quattrocolo© Iwan Baan© Siméon Duchoud© Ibai Rigby+ 6

First Look at the 2019 Serpentine Pavilion

Japanese architect Junya Ishigami's 2019 Serpentine Pavilion is taking shape in London. A series of photographs by Laurian Ghinitoiu showcase the project and its flowing, free-form roof. Ishigami is the second-youngest designer of the pavilion, and his work is known for a light and ephemeral approach. The design for the 2019 pavilion takes the form of a slate sheet rising from the landscape of the park, held up by pilotis that form an interior field.

2019 Serpentine Pavilion. Image © Laurian Ghinitoiu2019 Serpentine Pavilion. Image © Laurian Ghinitoiu2019 Serpentine Pavilion. Image © Laurian Ghinitoiu2019 Serpentine Pavilion. Image © Laurian Ghinitoiu+ 12

Francis Kéré and Office Kovacs to Design 2019 Coachella Installations

Francis Kéré, Office Kovacs, and NEWSUBSTANCE are among a set of designers selected to create art installations for the Coachella Arts and Music Festival in California. The 2019 lineup has been announced with Childish Gambino, Tame Impala, and Ariana Grande headlining the two-weekend experience. Over half a dozen large-scale installations will be built at Coachella, where over 100,000 people will experience the work of up-and-coming artists, designers and architects.

Francis Kéré to Design New Pine Log Pavilion for Tippet Rise Art Center

Tippet Rise Art Center has announced the commissioning of architect Francis Kéré to design a 1,900-square-foot pavilion for the center’s 10,000-acre grounds in Montana, USA. Envisioned as a “communal gathering space nestled among a cluster of aspen and cottonwood trees,” new renderings by Kéré Architecture depict the scheme featuring a locally-sourced log canopy.

The scheme can be read as an evolution of Kéré’s canopy structures designed for the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art near Copenhagen, and his 2017 Serpentine Pavilion in London.

Model of the Pavilion designed by Francis Kéré at Tippet Rise Art Center in Montana. Image Courtesy of Kéré ArchitectureExterior view of the Pavilion designed by Francis Kéré at Tippet Rise Art Center in Montana. Image Courtesy of Kéré ArchitectureCircular aerial bridge that is part of the Pavilion designed by Francis Kéré at Tippet Rise Art Center in Montana. Image Courtesy of Kéré ArchitectureSketch by Francis Kéré of the Pavilion that he is designing at Tippet Rise Art Center in Montana. Image Courtesy of Kéré Architecture+ 7

Francis Kéré’s 2017 Serpentine Pavilion To be Moved to Permanent Home in Malaysia

A month after its critically-lauded run came to a close, Francis Kéré’s 2017 Serpentine Gallery Pavilion has found a permanent home halfway across the globe.

As reported by the Star, the structure has been purchased by Kuala Lumpur-based Ilham Gallery, who are now searching for a permanent site of the pavilion in Malaysia.

7 Established Architects' Advice For Young Professionals and Students

In all but the most optimistic architect's career, there will be moments you come across doubts and insecurities about our profession. It is in these moments where the wisdom of the greats who have come before us can help provoke the inspiration needed to face the challenges proposed by architecture and urbanism.

Needing an architectural pick-me-up? Check out some advice from Alejandro Aravena, Álvaro Siza, César Pelli, Francis Kére, Jeanne Gang, Norman Foster and Paulo Mendes da Rocha after the break.

Critics Laud Francis Kéré’s 2017 Serpentine Pavilion for Its Simplicity and Authenticity

London’s annual temporary architecture pavilion spectacular has returned. Each summer the Serpentine Pavilion program selects an accomplished architect who has yet to create work in the United Kingdom, and asks them to build a temporary shelter on the gallery's lawn. The resulting structure is erected in June and dismantled in October.

This year’s offering is designed by Francis Kéré—the first pavilion designed by an African Architect to grace Kensington Gardens. Kéré’s project is composed of a series of curving blue walls shaded by an elliptical cantilevering wood and steel canopy. Thus far the design has been universally lauded by critics; read on to find out why they thought the project was so appealing.

© Laurian Ghinitoiu© Iwan Baan© Laurian Ghinitoiu© Laurian Ghinitoiu+ 6

Diébédo Francis Kéré's Serpentine Pavilion Opens in Sun-Drenched London – But Will Come Alive During Rain

The 2017 Serpentine Pavilion, designed by Diébédo Francis Kéré (Kéré Architecture), was unveiled today in London. Conceived as a micro cosmos—"a community structure within Kensington Gardens"—the pavilion has been designed to consciously fuse cultural references from Kéré's home town of Gando in Burkino Faso, with "experimental construction techniques." The architect hopes that the pavilion, as a social condenser, "will become a beacon of light, a symbol of storytelling and togetherness."

Serpentine Pavilion 2017, designed by Francis Kéré. Serpentine Gallery, London (23 June – 8 October 2017) © Kéré Architecture. Image © Iwan Baan       Serpentine Pavilion 2017, designed by Francis Kéré. Serpentine Gallery, London (23 June – 8 October 2017) © Kéré Architecture. Image © Iwan Baan       Serpentine Pavilion 2017, designed by Francis Kéré. Serpentine Gallery, London (23 June – 8 October 2017) © Kéré Architecture. Image © Iwan Baan       Serpentine Pavilion 2017, designed by Francis Kéré. Serpentine Gallery, London (23 June – 8 October 2017) © Kéré Architecture. Image © Iwan Baan       + 4

Francis Kéré to Design 2017 Serpentine Pavilion

The Serpentine Galleries have announced that the 2017 Serpentine Pavilion will be designed by Diébédo Francis Kéré (Kéré Architecture), an African architect based between Berlin, Germany, and his home town of Gando in Burkino Faso. The design for the proposal, which will be built this summer in London's Kensington Gardens, comprises an expansive roof supported by a steel frame, mimicking the canopy of a tree. According to Kéré, the design for the roof stems from a tree that serves as the central meeting point for life in Gando. In line with the criteria for the selection of the Serpentine Pavilion architect Kéré has yet to have realised a permanent building in England.

Francis Kéré: Architecture

Unlike almost any other architect, Diébédo Francis Kéré (born 1965 in Burkina Faso) stands for the association of constructive, social, and cultural aspects of building. He made a name for himself not only with his designs for Christoph Schlingensief’s Opera Village Africa. He has received numerous international awards, primarily for his building projects in his native country of Burkina Faso – including the 2004 Aga Khan Award for Architecture. His structures join his formal training at the Technische Universität Berlin with the traditional building methods of Burkina Faso. In doing so, he places local social and historical needs at the center of his design concepts.