20 Jan 2017, by WouterAalberts
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Kunlé Adeyemi, the founder of Dutch-Nigerian architecture firm NLÉ, has been appointed Aga Khan Design Critic in Architecture at the Harvard University Graduate School of Design. Starting in spring 2017, Kunlé tech the course "Building Industries in African Water Cities," in which students will explore the city of Durban to examine the challenges and opportunities presented by the impacts of urbanization in the social, physical and environmental context of the African continent. Before founding NLÉ, Kunlé Adeyemi worked for Dutch architecture firm OMA, where he led the design, development and execution of high profile projects such as the Shenzhen Stock Exchange tower in China, the Qatar National Library, and Prada Transformer in Seoul.
Kunlé Adeyemi is an architect, designer and urban researcher. His notable work includes ‘Makoko Floating School’, an innovative prototype floating structure located on the lagoon heart of Lagos, Nigeria. This acclaimed project is part of an extensive research project – ‘African Water Cities’ – being developed by NLÉ an architecture, design and urbanism practice founded by Adeyemi in 2010, focusing on developing cities and communities. NLÉ recently launched MFS II – a new, improved iteration of Makoko Floating School at this years’ la Biennale di Venezia, for which it was awarded the Silver Lion. Other projects include Chicoco Radio Media Center – an amphibious community building in Port Harcourt, Nigeria, the Museum of Aids in Africa, ROCK – Lakefront Kiosk in Chicago, USA, CDL Microfinance Bank in Lagos, Nigeria and Serpentine Summer House at the Royal Kensington Gardens in London, UK.
Alongside his professional practice Adeyemi is an international speaker and thought leader serving as jurors for the 2014 AIA award and 2016 RIBA international Prize. He is a multiple award winner, and holds an honorary doctorate degree in Architecture. He has taught at Cornell University and was an Adjunct Associate Professor at the Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation, Columbia University, New York, researching architecture and urban solutions that are closer to societal, environmental and economic needs.