Image: Public Acts: What does Mai Mai mean?

I am the co-founder of 1to1 – Agency of Engagement and currently enrolled at the Bartlett School of Architecture as a doctoral candidate in the TACK / Communities of Tacit Knowledge: Architecture and its Ways of Knowing network under Dr. Peg Rawes. Having been trained in architecture, I work through a blend of critical urbanism and design practice. My practice-led research interests are driven by issues of inclusive design approaches, spatial justice, critical positionality, and urban planning in South African cities.

I have recently shifted from my position as co-director of 1to1 – Agency of Engagement, a non-profit entity that undertakes design based collaborative projects often positioned between various grass-roots organisations, professional entities, academia and government. This role was held in conjunction with a research position within the DSD Desis Lab at the University of Johannesburg’s Faculty of Art, Design and Architecture (FADA), as well as various teaching positions in the faculty at UJ, amongst others locally.

The nature of my practice constellation has allowed me to manage an array of tactically built projects, local and international teaching roles as well as several multidisciplinary action-research projects in the field of urban development and participatory design. I have largely employed teaching as a grounded form of reflexive-practice that has allowed me a sustainable means to conduct live work through 1to1, while fostering an important space to write, carefully publish and ask critical questions through action-research and reflective learning over the last 10 years. This way of working has supported projects with various department of the South Africa government, key local and international research institutes and international universities that include Harvard’s GSD, (USA), CEPT’s Faculty of Architecture (India) and the University of Sheffield’s Masters in Urban Design, (UK).

Having been professionally trained in Durban (my home town), Cape Town, Johannesburg and Pretoria; I was awarded a master’s degree in architecture with distinction in 2012. In 2016 I completed a summer programme on leadership and social impact through policy hosted by the UC Berkeley’s Goldman School for Public Policy during my Young African Leadership (YALI), Mandela Washington Fellowship (MWF). But, it was during my experience as a student with the 2010 Slovo Park Project; a student and community led research, co-design initiative, that I developed a critical stance in regard to the role of design in the fluid and dynamic re-developing city areas of South Africa.

To see my collection of written/published work, please access my Research Gate profile. For my C.V please contact me directly or see my LinkedIn