The playful and colorful explosion of forms in the project illustrate its focus as a space for children in the Center for Nodding Disease in Odek, Uganda. The building is planned as the second phase of a larger complex dedicated to the care of children with Nodding isease, an affliction about which little is known but is widespread in Uganda. This “playground-as-campus” is the result of a participatory design process that incorporates the formal vernacular of traditional architecture as filtered through the drawings of its future inhabitants. The buildings will be constructed using local labor and traditional techniques with the aim of showcasing a post-conflict architecture, allowing inhabitants to rebuild their lives and homes.
The jury greatly appreciated the “Alice Through the Looking-Glass” strategy of tilting, coloring, and exaggerating the vernacular architecture of the region into something both new and exuberant. Further appreciation was given to the consideration the project gives not just to its main inhabitants but to using the project as a catalyst for community rebuilding after decades of war and displacement. By building up social and physical infrastructure and keeping the project by means of local ownership, the project is a contribution to the healing not just of children affected by Nodding Disease but of the village community as a whole.