Nka Foundation Announces the winners of the Mud House Design 2014 competition for Ghana.

The 1st prize winning design is Sankofa House by the design team: M.A.M.O.T.H from France

The 2nd prize winner is Eban Aya by Atelier Koe in Senegal

The 3rd prize is awarded to Ejisu Earth House by Jason Orbe-Smith in USA.

The competition was open to recent graduates and students of architecture, design and others from around the world. The challenge was to design a single-family unit on a plot of 60 x 60 feet to be built by maximum use of earth and local labor in the Ashanti Region of Ghana. The client of the design entry is the middle-income family at any township in the region. Total costs of constructing the design entry was capped at $6,000; land value was excluded from this price point. The competition was designed to: (1) to generate mud house design alternatives to be available free to everyone to appreciate, use, or improve them to generate more practical and contemporary design solutions for the region; and (2) to make possible the construction of the best design entries through building workshops to realize prototypes, as examples to the local people that mud architecture can be durable and beautiful.

The jury involved a preselection jury and grand jury by use of judging criteria involving functionality, aesthetics and technical matters. Twenty top finalists were chosen by the Preselection Jury of architects, professors and administrators with relevant expertise, which were forwarded to the Grand Jury of architecture professors and others who are established in earth architecture. From the Top 20 Design Entries, three prize-winning designs were selected. Prizes for first, second and third place consist of a commemorative plaque and a choice of cash reward or construction of winning design in Ghana. Every design team of the Top 20 Design Entries receives a certificate of recognition.

What is next?

Nka Foundation is issuing a challenge to builders, architecture professors and architects worldwide who know how architecture is localized, uses the means and the materials available in the site to create a friendly building to the environment. Join us as a workshop director or a participant to realize the winning designs from our 2014 Mud House Design competition in the Ashanti Region of Ghana. Each prototyping workshop will run for about 10 weeks. Participants can join at any time and participate for a minimum of 1 month. Students can use the workshop opportunity to fulfil the academic requirements for their stage/internship, thesis, or volunteer just for learning-by-doing on a vernacular architecture project. Here are all submitted design entries: http://nkaprojects.boards.net/thread/30/submitted-entries-1st-list Please, take a look!

For more information contact info@nkafoundation.org / www.nkafoundation.org.

Mud House Design 2014 Competition

Nka Foundation invites entries for Mud House Design 2014, an international architecture competition open to recent graduates and students of architecture, design and others from around the world who think earth architecture can be beautiful. The challenge is to design a single-family unit of about 30 x 40 feet on a plot of 60 x 60 feet to be built by maximum use of earth and local labor in the Ashanti Region of Ghana.

This is the design problem: In Ghana, as in other countries in West Africa, stereotypes about buildings made of earth persist because of poor construction. From the cities to the low-income villages, use of concrete – despite its dependence on imported resources – is considered indispensable for building. Yet an excellent, cheap and local alternative called laterite, red earth, is available everywhere in Ghana. The long-term goal is to enable the Ghanaian population and lots of other places, to overcome the stigma that mud architecture is architecture for the very poor.

Registration and submission of entries runs from March 15, 2014 until August 31, 2014. For additional information, see the competition Website: http://www.nkafoundation.org/competitions.html and the registration page: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/mud-house-design-competition-tickets-10697036123

The 12th International Photo Competition

The 12th International Photo Competition on “Earthen architectures: landscapes of architectures” is an initiative of the Municipality of Casalincontrada, in the Italian province of Chieti and the Documentation Centre on Earth Architectures, Terrae onus Association The “rediscovery” of the knowledge linked to earthen architecture recomposed in images, like tiles of a mosaic made of people, things, material and places. Images that could be interpreted as “surviving structures” or “new scenarios”, as well as architectures of the territory, memories and situations.

El X Congreso Internacional de Arquitectura de Tierra

El X Congreso Internacional de Arquitectura de Tierra tendrá lugar los días 27, 28 y 29 de septiembre, en Cuenca de Campos, provincia de Valladolid. El día 27 el congreso comenzará en Valladolid, en la Escuela Técnica Superior de Arquitectura. El 28 y el 29 nos desplazaremos desde Valladolid a Cuenca de Campos. Se disfrutará de una visita al laboratorio y un taller de tierra a cargo de José María Sastre. El grupo TIERRA os anima a participar en el congreso, como asistentes y sobretodo presentando ponencias, con el objeto de poner en común nuestros conocimientos.


EBUK 2014: Earth Building United Kingdom Conference

The 2014 EBUK conference “Training in Earth Building: from design to construction” will be held in Norwich on 14th February 2014. The broad conference theme includes education and training in building with earth, training in the structural and thermal design of earth buildings, training in safe and reliable construction methods and in the appropriate use of earth as a building material. The conference will showcase design, construction, conservation and research in the UK. Papers and presenters will engage with the conference theme and broader context of building with earth in the UK.


SIACOT Chile 2013

El 13° Seminario Iberoamericano de Arquitectura y Construcción con Tierra (SIACOT) Valparaíso 2013, promovido por la Red Iberoamericana PROTERRA y organizado por el instituto profesional Duoc UC de la Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile a través de su carrera de Restauración Patrimonial, tiene como finalidad reunir a los científicos, profesionales y técnicos que trabajan en torno al tema de la arquitectura, conservación y construcción con tierra, interesados por los amplios potenciales de este material. Se trata de una oportunidad de difusión y discusión, donde se evaluarán el estado actual de la investigación científica, de los proyectos, e innovaciones tecnológicas en marcha, así como los avances globales de la difusión de esta temática.



The third International Conference on kerpic’13 – New Generation Earthen Architecture: Learning from Heritage, to be held on 11-14 September 2013, in Istanbul, Turkey. The focus of the conference has evolved from new generation of earthen architecture, environment and health care, towards disaster prevention. We hope that it will bring together the related disciplines of architects and engineers, on material, construction, marketing and environmental science to create database, technology watch and strategy.

A workshop will be organized on site where all the participants can take part. Social and cultural program will offer an interesting historical tour and a distinguished dinner will welcome you. Post Congress program will be a tour to various sites of Turkey. Fore more information visit http://www.kerpic.org/2013/

Earth USA 2013

Earth USA 2013 is the Seventh International Conference on Architecture and Construction with Earthen Materials initiated by Earth USA. The conference organizer is Adobe in Action.

The formal conference will take place on October 4 and 5, 2013 in Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA. October 6th will be dedicated to local earthbuilding tours and excursions. The conference is being held at the New Mexico Museum of Art in the St. Francis Auditorium (107 West Palace Avenue, Santa Fe, NM 87501). Earth USA 2013 indicates a wider field of interest than previous conferences and will include adobe, rammed earth, compressed earth block (CEB) and monolithic adobe (cob). Any material or method that uses clay as a binder is considered.

Earth USA 2013 is now accepting abstract submissions (due April 14, 2013) for conference presentations. For more information visit http://earthusa.org/

Sustainable Earth Architecture Workshop

Sustainable Earth Architecture Workshop, Feb. 18 to 27, 2011

There will be an international workshop on Sustainable Earth Architecture in Subachoque, Colombia from the 18th to the 27th of February 2011 which will include construction of Mexican style vaults/domes (up to 18 feet), production of compressed earth blocks (using the CINVA RAM, which originated in Colombia), and the use of prefabricated bahareque which is being used in Colombia to construct housing. The workshop will feature a prototype of a house constructed using bahareque.

The workshop is being sponsored by Technotierra and will be led by architects/builders Ramon Aguirre and Lucia Garzon.

The workshop will occur during two consecutive weekends: Feb. 18, 19, 20 and 25, 26, 27th from 9 in the morning till 6 p.m. For those traveling from outside Colombia a teaching tour will happen Feb. 21, 22, and 23rd. In total the hands-on portion of the workshop encompasses 6 days (48 hours of instruction).

US$320.00 ($580.000 Colombian pesos)
The cost includes: workshop instructional content, accident insurance, construction materials, teaching team, tools, a certificate of completion, and transportation from Bogota to the worksite in Subachoque (38 kilometros from Bogota)

cell phone: 57 3102450630

I know Lucia Garzon. She is dedicated to promoting adobe construction that meets legal requirements (in Colombia those are the Normas ICONTEC) while emphasizing the use of natural local materials that are healthy and ecological, and utilize local labor. Lucia’s enthusiasm is contagious (and she speaks a mile a minute in Spanish!). I don’t know the other instructor Bovedero Maxiano Arq. Ramon Aguirre. It appears the primary focus is on use of CEB and bahareque in construction of walls and domes/vaults.

TECNOTIERRA , entidad colombiana desea difundir este evento para el mes de febrero….se esta promoviendo un taller practico integral de arquitectura sostenible con tierra, el taller esta dirigido a todo tipo de publico interesado en aportar al habitar el planeta y construir su hábitat de una forma ecológica y respetuosa con la naturaleza, aminorando el gasto energético de los materiales…en esta experiencia realizaremos la transferencia tecnológica con tres sistemas constructivos.
El taller se programo dos fines de semana, 6 días y 48 horas de vivencia practica….durante el taller realizaremos practicas de las siguientes tecnicas:

1- BOVEDAS MEXICANAS, en el taller construiremos una boveda a escala real de 6 metros.
2 -PRODUCCION DE BTC, insumo indispensable para realizar las bóvedas, como también para los muros, la norma ICONTEC 5324 ya esta aprobada desde el 2005 y esta aceptado como material técnico constructivo, paralelo a ello realizaremos un aprestamiento sobre la selección de suelos para conocer el material y saber como estabilizarlo.
3- BAHAREQUE PREFABRICADO,durante los últimos meses hemos realizado un prototipo de una vivienda social con este sistema constructivo, en este ademas de las paredes realizadas, se construyo una cubierta semi-plana, con materiales naturales y todo el proyecto esta realizado con coordinación modular , racionalizando al máximo los recursos naturales y sistematicamente tenemos al detalle el costo de esta obra en Colombia, toda realizada con materiales locales naturales, sanos, ecológicos y con mano de obra local.

Como el taller es eminentemente PRACTICO, los participantes al salir de este taller al concluirlo estarán en condiciones de realizar una bóveda y saber como se planea y construye, desde su inicio hasta el final, incluyendo manejo de canales e impermeabilización, considerando la seguridad para la sismoresistencia. Así mismo podrán conocer las fortalezas y debilidades de un sistema constructivo como el bahareque prefabricado, se aprenderá como debe ser revestido y cuales son las mezclas de pañetes con cal, todos los participantes conocerán los suelos y se acercaran a la producción de los BTC o Bloques de tierra comprimida o ecológicos con la maquina CINVA RAM.

La duración del taller será durante dos fines de semana consecutivos , esto con el fin de conocer los procedimientos completos y permitir secar los morteros, inicia el viernes 18 sábado 19 y domingo 20 desde las 9 de la mañana hasta las 6 de la tarde, este fin de semana, con una hora para el almuerzo, En esta experiencia conoceremos las bases de cada técnica, y el siguiente fin de semana viernes 25, sábado 26 y domingo 27 de FEBRERO, estaremos dejando concluida la bóveda de la casa, es una obra real y podremos apreciarla integralmente, por ello se planeo en dos fines de semana para visualizar la continuidad del sistema.
El valor del taller en pesos colombianos es de $580.000 el equivalente a 320 dólares.
Este valor incluye, la transferencia del conocimiento, seguro de accidentes, materiales de construcción, equipo de trabajo, herramientas, certificado y transporte local, desde Bogota hasta la obra en SUBACHOQUE (38 Kms de Bogotá/ Dpto. Cundinamarca/ COLOMBIA).

Esta dirigido por el Bovedero Maxiano Arq. Ramon Aguirre, y estará presente un maestro especialista en Bóvedas. lacoordinación será realizada por la Arq. Lucia E. Garzón, en la alianza profesional de dos expertos de la red PROTERRA, entidad que respalda este taller.
Para los de fuera de Bogotá y/o extranjeros interesados en aprovechar la semana se ofrece realizar una salida tematica para conocer obras de tierra patrimoniales y contemporaáneas, por ello ofrecemos adicionalmente un TOUR DIDACTICO durante la semana (21, 22 y 23 de febrero).. solo esperamos que nos cuente si le interesa, es optativo y tiene un costo adicional (en el visitaremos obras de construcción con tierra en Bogota, Tunja, VIlla de Leyva y Raquira).

Para mayor información pueden escribirnos y desde allí se les entregara mayor ilustración con la preinscripción en el correo electrónico: tallerarquitecturatierra@gmail.com,esperamos nos demuestre su intéres y les haremos llegar todo el contenido del proyecto, el cupo es limitado…

Como sabemos que cada uno de ustedes tiene su red de conocidos, que les puede interesar el tema les pedimos el favor de colectivizar esta infprmación y esperamos que cada vez seamos mas profesionales y personas interesadas y con herramientas para hacer una arquitectura mas respetuosa con el medio ambiente…..

Comite organizador y Arq. LUCIA E. GARZON
Celular 57 3102450630