Friday, February 18, 2011
Hassan Fathy, an Egyptian architect, was a renowed architect of building for the poor. He opened his architecture practice in Cairo, deeply involved in creating an indigenous environment using the mst minimal cost and also to improve the living standards in rural settlement area.
Hassan Fathy integrated Egypt traditional architectural and construction materials into his design, he even trained the locals to use local materials to build their own houses. He also valued the used of brick walls and courtyards for great natural ventilation.
Fares school, is a prototype school by Fathy, where he implant a lot of his previous ideas into the whole design. The administrative and communal areas (mosque, library and hall) each faced east and west while the classroom facing north and south with a courtyard in the middle.
"The quality and values inherent to the traditional and human response to the environment might be preserved without a loss of the advances of science. Science can be applied to various aspects of our work, while it is at the same time subordinated to philosophy, faith and spirituality." (quoted from African art and architecture)
"The classrooms, like the other areas of the school, were originally intended to be naturally ventilated, due to the extreme difficulty and prohibitive cost of providing mechanical means of cooling. To achieve this, the architect divided each classroom into a square domed area and a rectilinear vaulted space next to it. The domed area was intended to be the seating for the classroom, while the rectilinear space next to it was meant to contain a salsabil, or water pool, to further cool the air coming in through the slots in the vault above. Further ventilation was also expected to be supplied by operable casement windows that were paired with a circular fixed lunette specified to provide light only. In elevation, the rows of classrooms with their alternating slotted vaults and rounded domes clearly tell the story of their intended function, even though they are now partially screened by a boundary wall which has been built to separate them from a main street running alongside. The salsabils, however, were never installed, and the entire space is now used for teaching." (quoted from archnet)
"How do we go from the architect/constructor system to the architect-owner/builder system? One man cannot build a house, but ten men can build ten houses very easily, even a hundred houses.We need a system that allows the traditional way of cooperation to work in our society. We must subject technology and science to the economy of the poor and penniless. We must add the aethetic factor because the cheaper we build the more beauty we should add to respect man."
more info of Hassan Fathy : http://www.hassanfathy.webs.com/projects1e.html
all the above images from Archnet