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Updated: Dec 18, 2022

Black history month is a time to celebrate and remember the history and exciting growth of the black demographic. Of course, this should not just be isolated to one month, nonetheless, BHM gives us that moment to stop and reflect. As we are approaching the end of October, the post intends to reflect on the growth within our community across 2022.

| Diébédo Francis Kéré Wins the 2022 Pritzker Architecture Prize

For the first time in history, Diébédo Francis Kéré became the first black architect to be awarded the Pritzker Architecture Prize. This is an international architecture award that is presented annually, with 2022 being the 44th year. This award celebrates Kéré's architectural excellence and qualities, which include working with communities and creating narratives that are everlasting and enjoyable to its users.

The architecture that Kéré creates has characteristics that speak to sustainability through using local materials and having an innovative approach. Further to the matter, the designs reach out to his heritage of coming from a small village in West Africa, and it is delightful to see the core foundations of his life come through into created form. This achievement represents the progression within architecture for those of an ethnic minority. Furthermore, that true socially and environmentally driven architecture has a firm place within the built environment.

Image Credit: Lars Borges

Image Credit: Erik-Jan Ouwerkerk

| Black Females in Architecture Co-Founder Awarded an MBE

This year Selasi Setufe, co-founder of BFA, Senior Architect and Innovative Sites Manager, was awarded an MBE for her great work to diversifying architecture. Selasi was awarded during the Queens final New Years Honors of 2022, an encouraging moment and memorable mark that shows recognition to the efforts that are being made to increase diversity within architecture.

Personally, I find Selasi and her role in creating BFA with the other co-founders, encouraging and inspiring. I appreciate the work that has been done and the drive that is evident in their work, and their continuing aspirations for black females within the architecture industry. It is really about supporting and uplifting each other where we are set back in ways others are not, and it is organisations like BFA that help break through barriers.

Image Source: BFA

| First Black RIBA President Elected

One of the most talked about professionals of the architecture industry this year was Muyiwa Oki, as we saw him win the Royal Institute of British Architecture Presidential election 2022. This remarkable achievement will make him the first black RIBA President. Muyiwa is a practicing architect working at the international construction practice Mace and previously worked at the London based architectural practice, Grimshaw.

Muyiwa was one of the POC in Architecture mentors for Part I students preparing for the working world and showed a true sense of engagement, and set aside dedicated time during the mist of campaigning. I think it is safe to say we are all excited for what is to come and that this is a step in the right direction for the architecture community by diversifying the environment in which we work, at a leading level.

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