“Refashioning Batammaliba Architecture,” reconceptualizing Batammaliba architecture from Togo to decolonize and reshape how such spaces look and feel

By: Kevin Odwesso ‘21

Advising Faculty: René Brakels

Adviser: René Brakels

Major: Architectural Studies

Internship: Architectural Studies Department, Connecticut College

Project/Mission Statement

My project aims to transform vernacular African architecture by incorporating contemporary design concepts. The vernacular architecture, which is found in Togo ofWestern Africa, comes with its unique elements such as roundedness and the use of clay as a building technology. According to the Batammaliba tribe of Togo, the TataSomba, also known as a house, was perceived as a body with different parts that had various functions. I found this interpretation of residential spaces to be very unique since the home is regarded as a family member. Since I aim to emphasize the importance of traditional architecture, I am mostly paying attention to the idea of organic spaces and closeness with nature. Through the use of Revit software to design the homes and Enscape to render the landscape, I have been able to demonstrate these ideas with a clear understanding of how both art and technology can blend in this project. In my quest to decolonize Batammaliba architecture, it’s not only important to acknowledge what spaces in the traditional setting signified or represented but also how communities interacted with the home.

Related Fields: Ammerman Center