Submission by Awut Atak
I'd like to nominate Hassan Fathy's New Gourna Village project. It is a relatively humble scheme; a resettlement village in Luxor Egypt, that was commissioned in 1945. Made of adobe architecture with building methods informed by ancient Nubian construction, it is an interesting project that reflects the Egyptian architect's social and political leanings, manifested into built form. Fathy later published a book about the project, the seminal Architecture for the Poor (1969), that showed his wealth of historical, political and social knowledge as well as personal beliefs in sustainability, cultural continuity and collective politics. He was an architect with an agenda that he pursued rigorously in built form and writing, a dichotomy I personally enjoy. The result was a low-tech, sustainable scheme that embraced the vernacular architecture of the region, was suited to the climate and could be constructed by the general population.'
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