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Neenyo Net - a self-build infrastructure for performance and craft

Part 2 Project 2005
Neil Sansom
Joanna Leigh-Bedford
University of Sheffield | UK
Situated in the context of Dakar, Senegal and related to the real endeavour of 325 members of the REFDAF women’s organisation to construct their own community on the outskirts of the city, the Neenyo Net project imagines how existing means, skills and local resources can be used to construct a community building in a developmental context.

The project’s emphasis is on the process by which community infrastructure of street theatre and fabric production may build up to develop eventually into the building proposed. The materiality of this building emerges from the womens’ own activities in the field of fabric production and proposed relationships with craftsmen involved in the dismantling of scrap cars.

Neil Sansom
Joanna Leigh-Bedford

Neil’s project addresses the symbolic, social and economic value of arts in the Senegalese society. It takes on issues of self-organisation, self-building and sustainability, searching for alternative architectures in developing countries.
It valorises existing economies and local skills through the evolving process of construction and use of a building for performance, arts and crafts in the Cité des Femmes, a women run project in Dakar. Its flexible structure reinterprets the idea of patterning in the African textiles using recycled car components. Beside its important ethical and economic concerns, Neil’s project captures the taste for hybridisation in the contemporary African culture.


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