Kenya is a place where long entrenched cultural traditions interact with the fervor of urban modernization. Both in the heart of Nairobi, and at the peripheries, the line is contentious, sharply delineating a country into the past and future. In moments, the global repertoire of modern construction techniques becomes bound in a Kenyan vernacular, where an old approach is expressed with contemporary parts. Louisiana Hamlet Pavilion formulates a reciprocity where the local, is explored via the techniques of the global, of the universal standard. Born from the traditions of early society architecture and informed by the digital logic of contemporary architectural practice, the project describes a mode of interaction, a social algorithm through which a set of simple rules informs the generation of architectural space across a broad range of contexts, crafts, and skill sets.
Louisiana Hamlet Pavilion is an act of architectural misconstruction, formulated out of universally available scaffolding components organized into sets of modular assemblies defined by modifiable parameters. A strategy of on site constrained improvisation allows a crowd-sourced model to productively amplify errors and idiosyncrasies as drivers of aesthetic variation. Reconfigurable connections and identical elements extend the afterlife of the project enabling an adaptive response to the wide range of cultural and the economical constraints of both of its sites: in Kibera, Nairobi and the Lousiana Museum in Denmark. At work is a reformulation of existing ideas inherent in the global construction industry, exploiting scaffoldings periodic life-cycle towards an architecture of reuse and variation.
Both a pavilion in a museum setting as well as a Hamlet in Kibera, Louisiana Hamlet school asserts contemporary architecture’s imperative for adaptability, expressed as dual manifestations of a common methodology. In Denmark, the project is a form of prototypical architecture, challenging the tectonic and formal possibilities of conventional construction assemblies. In Kenya, it is a school, equipped to engage severe economic and logistical constraints in the production of an engaging educational environment. The result is an atmosphere, enriched in its colour and material texture as well as an attitude for new global adaptable collaborations.