Designed in collaboration with Joy Brasler and Cecile & Boyd
Indigenous people have a fundamentally different perception of a range of things moderns take for normal and that influence what ‘reality’ means to both.
For indigenous Southern Africans, humans are custodians rather than owners and traders of divided parts of the planet and its resources. The past, present and future are simultaneously present, making communication with ancestors a part of and a significant influence in daily life. Beyond the botanical and aesthetic, plants and animals have complex medicinal properties often administered in a spiritually charged context.
A defining characteristic of this parallel reality is that it’s not premised on the physical one.
In this ancient terrain, we were interested to see if space could conjure a measure of related transcendence. And in this condition of suspended reality enable people to experience without mitigation the primal intensity of this powerful landscape.
This coincided with the National Park’s requirement that all constructions other than those on the small previously disturbed location be removable after 20 years without leaving any physical legacy.
Merging transcendent experiential possibilities with the requirement for physical transience resulted in extreme delicacy, immateriality, lightness, elevated siting, openness, and an immersive integration with the landscape, like being a bird whose most reliable shelter is the fragility of a protective nest.
Nwanetzi, Kruger National Park, Mozambique border, South Africa
SAIA Award of Excellence (2006)