Close to the Edge: The Birth of Hip Hop Architecture

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Center for Architecture



Hip-Hop Architecture is a design movement that embodies the collective creative energies native to young denizens of urban neighborhoods. Its designers produce spaces, buildings, and environments that translate hip-hop’s energy and spirit into built form. Some 25 years in the making, Hip-Hop Architecture is finally receiving widespread attention within the discipline of architecture thanks to a series of influential essays, lectures, and presentations by Craig Wilkins, Michael Ford, and this show’s curator, Sekou Cooke. Close to the Edge: The Birth of Hip-Hop Architecture exhibits the work of these pioneers—students, academics, and practitioners—at the center of this emerging architectural revolution.

The exhibition, on view at the Center for Architecture October 1, 2018 – January 12, 2019, included work by 22 participants representing five countries, with projects ranging across a variety of media and forms of expression: from experimental visualization formats and installation strategies, to façade studies, building designs, and urban development proposals.

The work as originally exhibited was identified using three primary characteristics: hip-hop identity; hip-hop process and hip-hop image. The selections presented in the virtual exhibition cover each of these three categories and represent a cross-section of the various approaches included in the show.

Sekou Cooke

Exhibition Design:
Sekou Cooke

Graphic Design:
WeShouldDoItAll with graffiti by “Chino”

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