Atelier Masomi - an architect from Niger has revealed her design for the Ellen Johnson Sirleaf Presidential Centre for Women and Development in Monrovia, Liberia. The firm uses building materials including raw earth bricks, fired clay bricks, rubber wood, and woven palm leaves to create the structure. Read more about the project below at SURFACES REPORTER (SR):
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Atelier Masomi will be part of an all-woman design team which includes Sumayya Vally from Counterspace as the exhibition's architect and Karen Richards Barnes as the local architect. The centre commemorates the first female president of Liberia 2006 to 2018, who served from 2006 to 2018.
It will have an exaggerated slanted roof, similar to the one found in traditional palava huts, which will improve natural ventilation in the centre, which is the first project of its kind for a female head of state.
A variety of local materials will also be used, including raw earth bricks, fired clay bricks, rubber wood, and woven palm leaves, created by local artisans and manufacturers.
What will it comprise?
Once completed, the center will boast conference rooms, exhibition areas and a library, as well as a café. Between the blocks will be a series of courtyard spaces that will be used for events and workshops. In addition to exhibition spaces, the building will feature a digital archive, teaching spaces, and a cafe with a view of the ocean.
Mariam Issoufou Kamara, principal architect of the project, asserts that its design is an ode to Liberia's history, climate, culture, and architecture. Moreover, it reflects upon the difficulties faced and provides a beacon of hope inspired by Madam Sirleaf's leadership.
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