NLE´ IS AN ARCHITECTURE, DESIGN, AND URBANISM PRACTICE FOCUSED ON DEVELOPING CITIES AND COMMUNITIES
In the 21st (mega) century, the world faces a trend of rapid urbanization and de-ruralization. Megacities in the developing world are at the forefront of
this trend... and therefore at the forefront of finding solutions. The solutions uncovered and deployed here will be critical in shaping the near future of human civilization. We believe rapidly developing cities are the home of global advancement. Like Silicon Valley is to modern technology, the developing cities are the birthplace of innovative, new sustainable solutions for today’s developing world.
As thinkers, creatives and agents of change, our role is to reveal these solutions and apply them to responsibly shape physical, human and commercial structures around the world. We are starting in Africa and other developing regions. Our activities are focused on city development research and strategy advisory service, conceptualization and creative structuring, architecture and products design, infrastructure design, arts and cultural urban interventions. With our global network of experts and collaborators, our products and services are of world-class quality and integrity. At the same time, we ensure value and relevance through local resources, capacity building and economy of means.
AT HOME IN THE CITY
NLE´ means ‘at home’ in Yoruba, the language of Africa’s first truly urbanized population. From the 11th century onwards, the Yoruba lived in a network of West African cities characterized by sophisticated commercial and governing structures.
But within NLE´’s philosophy, the ‘home’ is much more than walls, floors and ceilings. For us it refers to the fundamental building blocks of the city, to everyday life and the uses of public space in the emerging and endlessly complex urbanisms of the so-called developing worlds.
Due to rapid urbanization and the forces of globalization, the people in such cites have redefined our understanding of cities through their innovative and economical appropriation
of spaces, materials and infrastructure. The environment—streets, bridges, sidewalks, raw materials and junk—are acquired, cultivated and reconstituted to achieve maximum necessities through minimum means. This creates unique organisations and advanced social structures in which people live, work, trade and play in ways that are now rarely seen in the developed world, which is now ironically the ‘less developing world’.
SOLUTIONS FOR THE MEGACENTURY
We believe that these colorful and seemingly chaotic worlds hold some of the solutions to the problems faced by cities in this century of mega needs. Our aim is to work with, and be inspired by, these worlds so that we create more eco-nomical and responsible interventions for/with the people who have made them home. In doing so, we explore the infusion of relevant global ideas and advanced technologies that add sustainable values to architecture, urbanism and everyday products. Our international network of experts and creatives from diverse fields contribute to this process. In this way, NLE´ is a new language for shaping and advancing the multiple physical and human architectures of the megacentury.
Kunle´ Adeyemi is an architect, designer and urban researcher. He is the found- er/principal of NLE´ and 2017 Aga Khan Design Critic in Architecture at Harvard University Graduate School of Design. His notable works include ‘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 NLE´ an architecture, design and urbanism practice founded by Adeyemi in 2010, focusing on developing cities and communities. NLE´ recently launched MFS II – a new, improved iteration of Makoko Floating School at the 15th International Architecture Exhibition - La Biennale di Venezia, for which it was awarded the Silver Lion Prize. Other projects include Chicoco Radio Media Center – an amphibious community building in Port Harcourt, Nigeria, ROCK – Lakefront Kiosk in Chicago, USA, CDL Head Office in Lagos, Nige- ria and Serpentine Summer House at the Royal Kensington Gardens in London, UK.
Before founding NLE´, Adeyemi worked for OMA, where he led the design, develop- ment and execution of high profile projects such as the Shenzhen Stock Exchange tower in China, the Qatar Foundation Headquarters, Qatar National Library, and Prada Transformer in Seoul. 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 from Hasselt University, Belgium. 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.
See NLE´ website www.nleworks.com or firstname.lastname@example.org more information.