One day in 2013, I had a chance to attend a lecture of an English architect in my previous University of Architecture in Ho Chi Minh city. I finished the university and was working for a Construction company then. During his talk, he shared a lot of great architectural philosophies about hospitality projects and one of the best things I still remember until these days is about his emphasis on local building materials and local building techniques. And his talk had totally changed my life and my thinking about what I am doing in my design work. Being a good designer is not enough. The mission of modern architects and designers must be good designers with deep sense of humility and responsibility for our community around us, climate change and a better planet for our next generations in future.
Besides absorbing new building techniques around the world, as modern designers and architects, we should take preservation, study and development on building techniques of our ancients and the native architectural identity as a mission.
Here is Nam Dam Homestay and Community House / 1+1>2 Architects in Vietnam.
“The Swallow Community House and Homestay: The iconic building of the village, showing innovation spirit while keeping local identity. This two-floor house with functions as the space for meetings, local & tourist activities with a small museum and 5 bedrooms. Verandas, voids and beveled folding roof resembling the Swallows’ wing – the bird believed to bring luck – make the inner space full of natural light.
Construction methods: Integrating between traditional an modern construction techniques, maximizing local materials (rammed earth wall and timber structure); - The foundation is constructed from local natural stone. - The 1st floor: The 80cm thick earth wall is rammed directly on the stone foundation. It plays an important role in preventing erosion, resisting the risk of scrubbing and also keeping the indoor space warm in winter and cool in summer. Inside the building, the wall surface is coated by a mixture of earth and additives in order to enhance the strength, prevent cracking and keep the surfaces clean.”