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Africa’s Iconic Architecture in 12 Buildings

Africa’s contribution to the world of architecture is immense, but has received little recognition, until now. A massive effort by architects Adil Dalbai and Livingstone Mukasa has resulted in the publication of a seven-volume tome on the subject, called Architectural Guide Sub-Saharan Africa.  Spanning a huge area and timeframe, the books provide an incredibly comprehensive look at the built environment. Here, we look at 12 of the buildings featured in the series as illustrations of the breadth and importance of their contributions to the world of architecture. Covering hectares of agricultural land in Uganda’s capital, Kampala, the Royal Complex at Kasubi is the burial place of monarchs of the Buganda Kingdom. Architecture studio Atelier Masōmī’s Nigerien founder, Mariam Kamara, collaborated with Yasaman Esmaili of Studio Chahar to restore a former Hausa mosque that had fallen into disrepair, adding a community space and library. Known as the Cradle of Humankind World Heritage Site, Maropeng is a state-of-the-art visitors’ centre designed to help people learn about the early development of modern humans.