Hi I’m Emmanuel and I wanted to talk about three things that are close to my heart which are
Design and construction
And the built environment. By this third point here I refer to our cities, towns and villages.
Generally, this topic seem to concern only a certain type of people in our societies, i: e technicians contractors etc. but in this case, I don’t want however to discuss this topic in a way that continues to alienates the people I most want to communicate with.
Architecture, to start with is a very lively subject similar to professions like fashion designers and music culture cinema medicine etc. and like every exciting profession you have to work hard and make lots of sacrifices.
What I find however is that in most poorly built environment, you find out that people don’t talk about architecture. In most cases, they know that and architect is someone who designs houses. A definition that in a way is not wrong of course, architect design houses, but so does anyone. So would you spend 7-8 years of your life learning how to design a house?
My reason for this speech is to address our built environment and how we can start doing something about it. You see we love our music, we love our culture, our dressing style, and our vibrant colour but there is one thing missing here, what about our architecture, the one thing on which a people should post their intrinsic content. Our environment could be described as our advertisement board. If the content of your poster board does not catch the eyes would anyone buy your product?
We notice the importance of our built environment through actions of great rulers in history. The famous pyramids, the Greek temples and Roman palaces, right up to the infamous Hitler and his architect Albert Speer all remind us of the importance of having architects on board and in very important esteem if a society has to function.
Architects are visionaries.
Permit to say at this point I want to expand the definition of an architect here. When I was a little kid, I generally and usually could not wait for the end of the school day just so I could go back home and finish building my little model car or bamboo nest. I will usually work on it for days carrying the images of the end product in my little head as I workaround. It was exciting times, and all the kids you see around the neighbourhood modelling all these stuff are the same. They can visualise what they are working on. Now magnify their project and give them the chance to delivery and you see the vision of towns and cities they could dream out.
Sometimes I pity our politician because I can understand where they are coming from. Now take an example of two kids that grow up in the same neighbourhood, progress to college and then take up their respective careers. One becomes a politician and the other a postman for example. Before you know the post workers are on strike and they are asking his childhood friends for better working conditions better roads etc. The question to ask is does he know better? It’s more than likely that all he knows is what he lived through or saw on TV. And he interprets the people’s request to mean what he sees on Tv, which brings us to the last part of my discussion today. NO one will build your country better than yourself. One of my friend’s ones lamented after his visit to Nigeria on holidays that he went to his village and most developed parts of it were like a little Spanish village. Which the people were happily exhibiting as progress. Does this architect reflect our culture, our music, and our vibrant colours? We see our artist painting our embroiders making textile, our sculptors carving. That is us. That is where our architecture is buried. It’s buried in our arts and culture. I want to be part of the drive to unearth these buried visions and hang it back so they’re displayed on our hospitals our schools our colleges our roads our public places our high ways you name it. I invite all enthusiast to join me on this journey by logging and registering on my web page lets begin the journey.