How are different cultures expressed in the built environment?
How does your identity change the way you're perceived as an architect and how can we change that for our future?
Join BLAC for an engaging, interactive conversation between architects, students and graduates about how our identities influence our architecture.
BLAC are hosting an interactive discussion between students, tutors, graduates and architects surrounding the theme of identity, culture and race and how each of these factors have affected, do affect and will affect how the architectural landscape is expressed visually and symbolically. Equally, we will be discussing how each of our identities have affected our understanding of the architectural world as an architect, both in school and in “the real world”. Our guest speakers will candidly speak about their experiences of their identities affecting their experience as an architect, and we hope to get everyone involved by creating a calming safe space for everyone, of all cultures.
Ilze Wolff is a co-founder of Wolff Architects, an architectural firm based in South Africa, alongside her partner Heinrich Wolf. Wolff Architects describe themselves as "a design studio concerned with developing an architectural practice of consequence through the mediums of design, advocacy, research and documentation".
Ilze graduated with a B.Arch at the University of Cape Town. She received a Mphil in Heritage and Public Culture, African Studies Unit, UCT. Ilze co-founded Open House Architecture in 2007, a transdisciplinary research practice which she continues to direct parallel to her partner.
Sellasie Humado is the founder of Mado Homes, an architectural firm based in Surrey, UK.
Mado Homes is an innovative and multi-disciplinary architectural design practice in the residential sector, serving customers in Surrey, Sussex, London, Berkshire, and the surrounding area.
Sellasie has over 10 years of experience in planning and architecture. His firm Mado Homes strives to differ from the conventional practice of other architectural firms by challenging the boundaries to produce the most unique and exquisite homes, providing excellent client experience.
Sellasie has previously studied in Nottingham Trent and Reading University for his part 1 and part 2 respectively, and wrote a spectacular dissertation on the important topic of the value of architect's work versus their pay and worth in the industry.
Kudzai Matsvai is a recent master's graduate from the Liverpool School of Architecture and a self-proclaimed architectural activist. She is also the founder and ex-president of the BLAC Collective.
She believes that in our current global climate it is vital that architects endeavour to creatively and authentically engage with diverse histories and communities in order to deliver design solutions that are truly inclusive, equitable, and accessible. This cannot be achieved until the profession itself is more diverse and inclusive, and so she is fighting to make architecture a more accessible and achievable career path for marginalised individuals.
Kudzai also recently delivered an online seminar for Liverpool Architecture Festival as part of their Black History Month celebrations, as well as was one of the speakers at Feilden Clegg Bradley's London Architecture Festival Pecha Kucha in the summer where she spoke about the lack of action when it comes to racial disparities in architecture.