Challenging the current status and capabilities of architecture is vital to propelling Indigenous architecture into the future. Respect, restraint, reciprocity, long-term sustainability, recognizing the history of a place, and acknowledging natural cycles are a few of many indigenous thought principles that all architecture can respond to. How are these principles reflected in the process of designing and making?
Can an architectural structure contribute to an ecosystem, reflect collective thinking, house independent practices, and create new connections? Imagine an Indigenous architectural structure of the future guided by the lenses of technology, alternative worlds, science fiction, and interpretation of time. What does the environment at this time look like? What are construction methods like in the future? What kind of rooms or spaces do we need to accommodate the lifestyles of the future? Imagining new relationships between structures, the environment, and inhabitants, human and non-human alike, allows us to question how to foster increased reciprocity in the built world.
Humble and radical imaginative ideas are the seeds of tomorrow’s architecture. Design the future. Boldly create and have fun!
Phillip Benitez Gallegos, Jr. is a licensed architect in Colorado and New Mexico. He practices architecture and urban design and has run a construction company. Gallegos attended the University of Notre Dame, where he earned a professional Bachelor of Architecture degree, and the University of Colorado, where he earned a Master of Architecture in Urban Design. At the University of Hawaii at Manoa, he earned an Architecture Doctorate and was designated a visiting scholar.
Gallegos retired with the rank of Associate Professor of Architecture, tenured, at the University of Colorado Denver. He is the author of the school’s Design Build Certificate program and served as study abroad coordinator to Central America, Guatemala, Nicaragua, and Rome. He is also the founding Program Director for the BS Architecture program, which has seen substantial growth since launching in 2013. Gallegos has taught at the University of Hawaii and the University of New Mexico, where he served as the director of the Design Planning Assistance Center and a design build studio instructor.
His professional interests include building technologies, structural engineering for architects, and designing in stressed environments. His research interests are in open electronic platforms for online education and the Spanish influences and regulations in the built environment of the Southwest US and Central America. He has also contributed to a book publication, Enduring Legacies: Ethnic Histories and Cultures of Colorado, and has presented papers on design-build in Santiago, Chile, and Singapore.
See some precedents below to get inspired!