Simone Swan is perhaps this country’s most important advocate for adobe or mud brick architecture. In 1997, Swan left her New York home and moved to “500 acres of scenic fringe of the Chihuahuan desert near Presidio, Texas. There she founded the Adobe Alliance to teach the earth building techniques she had learned from the great Egyptian architect Hassan Fathy.
(Courtesy Adobe Alliance)
Swan also built an adobe studio and home that featured dramatic earthen vaults using a techniques she learned under Fathy. But now, due to unusual weather patterns in the region, the vaults have fallen and Swan is seeking volunteers to rebuild them and learn the crafts and techniques of earth architecture. The work will be supervised by Swan and Mexican adobe master Fernando Pina, who will handcraft a Nubian vaulted roof measuring 23-feet by 10-feet on the property.
For further information, visit the Adobe Alliance website, or call 505-988-2828, or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Preferably bring your passport to cross the Mexican border (the mud bricks will be made in Mexico) or driver’s license. Camping and hot showers are available immediately, whereas the kitchen will be operating as soon as the vault is built. For every day bring drinking water, your dog, and sun protection. For environmental, architectural, or engineering students, a certificate of completion is offered.(Courtesy Adobe Alliance)