Dezeen Magazine

Tosin Oshinowo

Tosin Oshinowo chosen to curate Sharjah Architecture Triennial

Nigerian architect Tosin Oshinowo has been appointed to curate the second edition of the Sharjah Architecture Triennial, which will take place in 2023.

Lagos-based Oshinowo is principal of the architecture studio CM Design Atelier and has become known for socially responsive architecture projects across Nigeria.

She was co-curator of the Lagos Biennial in 2019 and is also among the judges for Dezeen Awards 2022.

She becomes the second curator of the triennial architecture exhibition, after the inaugural Sharjah Architecture Triennial in 2019 was overseen by academic Adrian Lahoud.

Triennial will focus on "sustainable architecture, urbanism and infrastructure"

Oshinowo plans to use the event to offer a new perspective on sustainable architecture and infrastructure, with a particular focus on adaptability.

"My approach is inspired by the history, traditions, and landscape of Sharjah and other cities across Africa, the Middle East and Asia, exploring architecture and design solutions that are built from conditions of scarcity," she said.

"I'm looking forward to working with my colleagues around the world to illuminate a pathway forward that reorients our global conversation on sustainable architecture, urbanism and infrastructure."

Sharjah Architecture Triennial was established with the ambition of spotlighting architecture across western Asia, southern Asia and the African continent.

The appointment of Oshinowo was intended to help the triennial broaden the scope of its network and dialogue.

The architect has a decade of experience with civic-minded projects, including a recent project working the United Nations Development Programme to build new housing in northern Nigeria for a community displaced by Boko Haram.

She has written extensively on afro-modernism and identity, including a contribution to the 2021 Venice Architecture Biennale, and has explored themes of identity in projects like the Freedom to Move face masks for Design Miami.

"The theme of adaptability that is central to Oshinowo's curatorial proposal builds on the Sharjah Architecture Triennial commitment to addressing the challenging conditions we face not only in the Global South but around the world," said Hoor Al Qasimi, director of the Sharjah Architecture Triennial.

"With a breadth of knowledge and experience from her work in an African context, Oshinowo brings to the second edition a decisive, and much needed, focus on socially responsive approaches to architecture and urbanism."

Sharjah Architecture Triennial moved to 2023

The second Sharjah Architecture Triennial was originally scheduled to take place in 2022 but, like numerous design events, was delayed as a result of Covid-19 uncertainty.

The dates for Sharjah Architecture Triennial are yet to be announced, as is the title of Oshinowo's exhibition.

The theme for the inaugural Sharjah Architecture Triennial was Rights of Future Generations, which focused on collective entitlements such as rights to natural resources and a benign environment.

Highlights from the exhibition included a zero-waste garden, a trio of prefabricated Bangladeshi homes and an installation on windowless servant quarters in Lebanon.

The photo of Tosin Oshinowo is by Spark Creative.