Rural Studio, Samuel ‘Sambo’ Mockbee
“Proceed and Be Bold!” is a catchphrase used by the incredibly talented Samuel “Sambo” Mockbee, cofounder of Auburn’s Rural Studio (and winner in 2000 of a MacArthur ‘genius’ grant, among other awards).
The Rural Studio was developed within the Auburn School of Architecture with intent to get students out of the classroom and in to hands-on experience with members of a community that would actually be utilizing their work. In the past, the students’ hands-on experience consisted of them building temporary works…a beam or truss, which would later be torn down. D.K. Ruth, who hired Mockbee at Auburn, discussed with Mockbee that one could take such materials and (rather than a temporary exercise) they could “build something substantial”. The idea for Rural Studio was less pre-conceived notions of what architecture is – be it for glass skyscrapers or McMansions – and more a noble architecture of decency for poor people – beautiful whether built with carpet squares, car windshields, or tires. Mockbee died December 30, 2001 but left behind were stunning, noble works for people in one of the poorest areas in the country.
The Rural Studio is still going strong.
via deep fried kudzu (ginger):