Gurunsi Earth Houses of Burkina Faso


The Kassena people of Burkina Faso (a small African nation near the border of Ghana) don’t have many resources or economic wealth but that hasn’t stopped them developing a rich culture and architectual heritage, employing traditional practices to create beautiful dwellings. Occupying a small community of just over a hectare in area, their houses are made from a sun-dried mix of clay, soil, straw and cow droppings moistened to create a perfect mortar, mixed by foot to create strong pottery-like structures.

The most eye-catching feature however is the intricate, hand-painted ornamation that covers the structures, painted with colored mud and chalk to tell detailed stories of the ancient tribe’s culture. By adapting to their surroundings, the tribe has developed a form of highly practical, ornate and homely architecture, from which a lot could be learned by the Western world. (via designboom)