Adobe Workshop

How to approach adobe as a building material in a scientific way?

Text: Ádám Bihari

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The Adobe Workshop was targeted to present the workings of the raw material based on its objective qualities and faculties as a building material, as well as surveying the variety of components and structures made from it and the potentials architecture may acquire by using it. In the early 2000s architects Romain Anger and Laetitia Fontaine specialised in earth architecture with the Grenoble-based Laboratoire CRAterre started their series of scientific demonstrations titled Grains de Bâtisseurs to present the topic in scientific depth and with pedagogical ambitions.Their principle was very simple indeed: to present the materials of earth architecture as well as their physical-chemical workings by using simple and yet spectacular means. Lecturers of the Adobe Workshop (Mud Collective – Ádám Bihari and Veronika Holczer) acquired the basics of the French pedagogy method during their onsite studies and research work at the institution and places mentioned above and then decided to start a similar series of lectures in order to reinforce and boost Hungarian adobe-architecture. Their objective was to make people aware of the workings of adobe and thus explore its hidden potentials for architecture. It would be important in a region so rich in high-quality adobe as the Carpathian Basin to make adobe more popular both among professionals and the wider public as an alternative of building materials for contemporary architecture so that it would be not only the enthusiasts of vernacular architecture could use it extensively.