Building, Dwelling, Thinking

Part One: 28 April 2022

Let's talk about buildings and the design thinking around them.

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CPD Points

2.00 Australian QLD - NSW - TAS - WA Points 20.00 NZ Registered Architects Board Points 2.00 Licensed Building Practitioner - Design 1 Points 2.00 Australian CPD ACT-SA-NT Points 2.00 Licensed Building Practitioner - Design 2 + 3 Points 2.00 AIA - USA Points 2.00 RIBA - The Royal Institute of British Architects Points

Presented By

Teulo Talks

Event Description

9am - 10am

Toshin Oshinowo


Tosin Oshinowo (b. 1980) is a Lagos-based Nigerian architect and designer renowned for her innovative Adunni chairs, expansive residential and commercial spaces, and insights into socially-responsive approaches to urbanism. Grounded in a deep respect for Yoruba culture and history and coming from a markedly African context, Oshinowo’s designs embody a contemporary perspective on the next generation of African design and afro-minimalism: a responsive reflection of the past, present, and future of architecture and design that prioritizes sustainability, resilience, and poise.

As an architect, Oshinowo is best known as the founder and principal of cmDesign Atelier (cmD+A), established in 2012. Based in Lagos, the practice has undertaken a number of predominant civic projects, including the design of the Maryland Mall, as well as a wide range of residential projects, including luminous beach houses on the coast of the oceanside city. Her interest in architecture extends into a border vision of urbanism and community as well; she is currently working on a project with the United Nations Development Programme to plan and rebuild a village in northern Nigeria destroyed by Boko Haram.

Prior to founding cmD+A, she worked in the offices of Skidmore Owing & Merril in London and the Office of Metropolitan Architecture Rotterdam, where she was part of the team that designed the 4th Mainland Bridge proposal in 2008. Upon returning to Lagos, she practiced at James Cubitt Architects and led on notable projects including the master plan and corporate head office building for Nigeria LNG in Port Harcourt.

As a product designer, her work is primarily focused on the design of chairs; in 2017, she created Ilé-Ilà, which means House of Lines in her native Yoruba language. A luxury brand, Ilé-Ilà chairs are made to order, designed and handmade in Lagos and has been featured as a highlight of contemporary African furniture design in publications around the world, including Harper's Bazaar Interiors April 2018, Elle Decor January 2020, and Grazia online June 2020.

Oshinowo’s work also spans into the conceptual sphere, with a strong interest in architectural history and socially-responsive approaches to architecture, design, and urbanism, underpinned

by a passion for supporting African design and innovation. She has partnered with major brands, including Lexus, on conceptual design explorations, and written prolifically on urbanism, afro modernism, design, and identity in publications including Expansions, a publication as part of the 2021 Venice Architecture Biennale and Omenka Online, a topic also explored in her TEDxPortHarcourt talk in November 2017. She also co-curated the second Lagos Biennial titled How to build a Lagoon from a bottle of Wine? in 2019.

Oshinowo is a registered Architect in the Federal Republic of Nigeria and a member of the Royal Institute of the British Architects, with design and architectural degree from Kingston College in London, a masters degree in urban design in development from the Bartlett School of Architecture and a Diploma in Architecture from the Architecture Association London. She has won numerous awards, including 3rd City People Real Estate Awards for Architect of the Year 2017 and the Lord’s Achievers Awards for Creativity, in celebration of World Achievers day 2019.

Talk topic: Conceptual design and advocacy

Tosin Oshinowo’s work extends beyond architectural and product design into the advocacy sphere. Much of her work -- from conceptual projects to civic master plans to writing and speaking engagements -- prioritizes a vision of architecture and design that is bigger than creating objects and spaces, but extends to underscore a more equitable and more expansive vision of our shared future. Deriving inspiration from local Yoruba traditions and the international language of architecture and design, Oshinowo explores pathways for the future from a distinctly African perspective that prioritizes equity, sustainability, and a respect for nature and history while creating a new, more contemporary language of design.

10am - 11am

Dr Asma Mehan

Podcast topic:

Monographs and research projects in the field of Architectural Humanities.

(Ph.D., M.A., B.Arch., B.Sc.)

Ph.D. in Architecture, History and Project, Politecnico di Torino, Italy

Dr. Asma Mehan is an architect, researcher, and educator. She was previously awarded four highly selective fellowships, including an Urban Citizenship Fellowship supported by the Municipality of Amsterdam and the Netherlands Institute for Advanced Study in the Humanities and Social Sciences (NIAS-KNAW) (2021-2022) and an Individual fellowship funded by the Portuguese Foundation for Science and Technology (FCT). Asma achieved her Ph.D. in the ‘Architecture, History, and Project’ program, on October 2017, from the Politecnico di Torino (Italy). 

Between 2020-2021, Asma held a postdoctoral research fellowship position affiliated with the Leiden Institute of Cultural Anthropology and Development Sociology (CADS) and the Leiden-Delft-Erasmus (LDE) program for Port City Futures (PCF) in South Holland. Her previous postdoctoral experiences at four important research centers in Porto (2019-2020, CITTA research center, University of Porto), Torino (2018-2019, Future Urban Legacy Lab (FULL), Berlin (2019, ZK/U Center for Art and Urbanistics), and Tehran (2017-2018, Iran University of Science and Technology (IUST), Tehran) have allowed her to conduct research in the different European and Asian contexts. 

Her primary research and teaching interests include architectural humanities, critical urban studies, planning politics, oil urbanism, and Industrial Heritage Studies. Asma completed research stays in Australia (Deakin University, Melbourne, 2016-2017) and at the EPFL University, Lausanne, Switzerland (2017), and was a researcher in resident at the ZK/U Zentrum für Kunst und Urbanistik, Berlin, 2019. She is the co-author of the book entitled “Kuala Lumpur: Community, Infrastructure, and Urban Inclusivity” (London: Routledge, 2020). 

Dr. Mehan has taught at TU Delft, Chair of Urban History and Theory, University of Porto, TU Munich, ZK/U Berlin Center for Art and Urbanistics, and Deakin University, Melbourne (Australia). Mehan has received several awards from prestigious institutions such as AESOP, EAHN (European Architectural History Network), Society of Architectural Historians (SAH), ZK/U Center for Art and Urbanistics Berlin, and Society of Architectural Historians of Great Britain (SAHGB). 

Dr. Mehan has authored over fifty articles and essays in scholarly books and professional journals in multiple languages on critical urban studies, architecture, urban planning, housing, and heritage studies. She has also has been a member of several international scientific committees and conferences. Asma’s research reaches academic audiences through international exhibitions, artistic venues, policy toolkits, visual media, journalistic blogs, and online outlets. 

In this podcast we talk to Dr Asma Mehan about her background and expertise within the field of Architectural Humanities. Asma discusses how we evaluate the politically generative dynamic of urban space. Notably, we put forward the notion of the ‘multiplier effect’ of the urban, referring to its ingrained tendency to multiply resistance to oppression and violence being exerted against subaltern groups and minorities and, in doing so, to turn this multiplied resistance into an active force of social change. We, therefore, look at the twofold valence of ‘resistance’: negative and affirmative. Resistance initially takes form as a defensive response to oppression and violence. When this happens, the urban becomes the living platform for a multiplying dynamic of encounter and, potentially, of inter-group solidarity, thus laying the foundations for a cooperative – rather than competitive, as in neoliberal rationality, or inimical, as in national-populist reason – way of ‘being together’.

AACA competency and learning objectives:

  1. Design: Conceptual Design

3.2 Application of creative imagination, aesthetic judgement ans critical evaluation in formulating design options.

  1. Design: Schematic Design

4.1 Evaluation of design options in relation to project requirements

  1. Documentation: Detailed Design

5.1 Application of creative imagination and aesthetic judgement in producing a resolved project design

Teulo Talks: Building, Dwelling, Thinking: Part One image

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