Built on the outskirts of the Senegalese capital as a showcase for global trade in 1974, this astonishing city-sized hymn to the three-sided shape was designed by young French architects Jean Francois Lamoureux, Jean-Louis Marin and Fernand Bonamy. Their obsessive geometrical composition was an attempt to answer the call of Senegal’s first president, the poet Léopold Sédar Senghor, for a national style that he curiously termed “asymmetrical parallelism”. Many such projects feature in the Atlantic coast volume of Sub-Saharan Africa, an immense new architectural guide that brings together a staggering collection of more than 850 buildings from 49 countries within 3,400 pages. Seven years in the making, the publication provides an illuminating cross-section of the continent, from the glittering skyscrapers of oil-rich Luanda in Angola to the mud mosques of Mali and the art deco buildings of Burundi. It boasts more than 350 authors, half with African roots.
SOURCE: THE GUARDIAN