A museum built in Durban to celebrate Zulu heritage has won the first Africa Architecture Awards.
uMkhumbane Cultural and Heritage Museum in Cato Manor‚ built for R75-million in 2016 and designed by Choromanski Architects of Durban‚ was unveiled as the $10‚000 (R135‚000) winner on Thursday night at the new Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa in Cape Town.
The awards‚ sponsored by construction materials giant Saint-Gobain‚ attracted 307 entries from 32 countries. The shortlist of 21 projects‚ as well as the final winners‚ were chosen by a jury of leading African architects and academics.
Saint-Gobain retail division MD Evan Lockhart-Barker said: “Although this is only the first edition of the Africa Architecture Awards‚ we believe we have captured an incredible moment in time for Pan-African architecture.
“Having launched the first-ever awards of its kind‚ we’ve seen the incredible response from architects working across the continent. The values and aspirations displayed in the awards have led to incredible insights about the continent and its shape-shifting ways.
“Yet we still have a way to go to write our own story about architecture and its role here. Africa is indeed rising … but due to the continent’s resourcefulness and complex regional identities‚ we’ve already learnt that our awards programme requires even more diversity to capture Africa and all its spectrums. We look to future editions of the awards to achieve this.”