Bridging the gap at DI2011

Francis Kéré works at the intersection between architecture and education, where he deals with development strategies.

Education, development and upliftment best describe the tenets that drive the architectural work of Francis Kéré. Born in Burkina Faso and educated in Germany, this architect now spends his time between Europe and Africa, applying his research, which focuses on development strategies with local character.

Having had the opportunity to be educated in Europe, Kéré now considers it his duty to use his skills for the benefit of the people of his home continent. Kéré’s work promotes modern and sustainable architecture in Africa by adapting technology from the industrialised world in simple ways, with a keen awareness of climatic conditions and the benefits of using local materials.

“Every child in the world is full of creativity. What children need to use their potential is education. I am convinced that with the provision of intelligent architecture this potential can be advocated. This is what I am trying to do,” Kéré says.

Kéré works to develop projects that have the potential to instil a sense of pride and hope in communities, while also serving as a solid base for education. His portfolio includes the Women’s Community Centre in Gando, Burkina Faso; the Museum and Centre for Communication in Mopti, Mali; numerous school projects in Burkina Faso; the National Park in Bamako, Mali; and an Opera Village in Laongo, Burkina Faso.

What’s more, Kéré also:

  • Believes that education is the foundation for all social, technical and economical development.
  • Lectures at Technische Universität Berlin.
  • Has participated in numerous exhibitions including the Venice Biennale.
  • Is part of the Small Change, Big Change exhibition, currently on at the Museum of Modern Art in New York.
  • Has been awarded the Aga Khan Award for Architecture and, most recently, the BSI Swiss Architectural Award.

Francis Kéré
will be speaking at the 2011 Design Indaba Conference from 23 to 25 February.

Watch the Talk with Francis Kéré

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