GSA Homegrown: Celebrating African Architectural Talent

Homegrown is a social media and print campaign that celebrates the African talent in our GSA-Boogertman + Partners International Lecture Series. The series is listed alphabetically and draws conceptually on the idea of the periodic table. Each description has a link to the introductions that we've made over the years, an interesting and perhaps unknown fact about the speaker and the date of their lecture. All Africans, including South Africans and Africans-in-the-Diaspora, are included. At our last count, we've had 31 African speakers out of a total of 47, which we believe is something worth celebrating.

News 30 Sep 2019
Homegrown # 03 Bob van Bebber

It’s fair to say that there wouldn’t be an International Lecture Series without Bob van Bebber. His commitment to educating and inspiring a whole new generation of African architects is without parallel. In a difficult and uncertain economic climate, Bob’s determination to make sure our students and practitioners (young and not-so-young) get to see, hear and have drinks with dozens of high-profile, emerging and hidden thinkers and makers come to Johannesburg has been an incredible ‘gift’ to Johannesburg’s wider architectural culture. His talk on Thursday, 17 August 2017 was an eye-opener! Want to know a few interesting facts? Bob doesn’t smoke or drink but he swears a lot. He loved Lego as a child. Still does. He studied at Wits under Pancho Guedes and counts him as one of the reasons he became an architect. He always wanted to design a football stadium . . . and he did! He speaks Dutch as well as English and Afrikaans He comes to every ILS lecture! We adore Bob.

News 26 Sep 2019
Homegrown # 01 Kunlé Adeyemi

Kunlé Adeyemi was the very first speaker in our series, opening to a full house on Thursday, 11 August 2016 at MOAD. In considerable pain from an eye operation only days before, he and Prof Lesley Lokko chatted for over an hour about his early career with OMA, studying in Lagos; his rapid rise to fame; his interest in cities on water; Makoko I, II & III and his ambitions for the future. Want to know a few interesting facts? Kunlé Adeyemi studied architecture at the University of Lagos where he ran into Rem Koolhaas. His father was an architect. He’s mostly vegetarian. He lives almost simultaneously in Lagos, Amsterdam and the US.

News 21 Sep 2019
Homegrown # 04 Boom Architects

BOOM Architects were the first GSA tutors to lecture in the ILS on Thursday, 19 October 2017. Craig McClenaghan introduced Eric Wright and Claudia Morgado to the delight of Unit 13 students in particular, who’d never seen Eric sweat! Their talk deftly wove practice, research, building and ideas and set the bar for all the other GSA tutors who followed. Want to know a few interesting facts? Eric plays in a band, co-owns a coffee shop, fixes motorcycles and makes a mean Bloody Mary in his ‘spare’ time. Claudia and Eric studied together at Wits, they have taught together since 2012 and they’ve run a practice together for the past eight years . . . and they’re still on speaking terms! Claudia gives gifts of her father’s honey (he’s a beekeeper) at Christmas and it’s the best honey in Jo’burg