Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Thread Cultural Center, Senegal by Toshiko Mori

Thread is an artists' residence and cultural center in Sinthian, a village in Senegal. It was designed pro-bono by Japanese architect Toshiko Mori.

The design "combines local materials and building customs with an innovative design and specific geometry," and it has won a stack of awards. The project web site says,
Thread is a socio-cultural center with a residency program to allow local and international artists to live and work in Sinthian, a rural village in Tambacounda, the southeastern region of Senegal. It houses two artists’ dwellings, as well as ample indoor and outdoor studio space. . . .

The mission of Thread is twofold: to allow artists access to the raw materials of inspiration found in this rarely-visited area of the world; and to use art as a means of developing linkages between rural Senegal and other parts of the globe.

The center was conceived by a local Sinthian doctor, Magueye Ba, who talked the Josef and Anni Albers Foundation into funding the venture. I think connecting local African artists to the international scene might turn out to be a great use of aid funding, since art is one area in which Africans are highly competitive in the global economy. Plus the center looks amazing.

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