title: nKA stage

type: performance space and community center

instructor: Jose Rivera

year: 2015


In 2013, Jose participated in a 8-week, volunteer, art + architecture residency in Abetenim, Ghana. With a team of seven individuals from around the world, the original plan was to design, construct, and perform in a recording studio with local musicians. Due to a myriad of unforeseen occurrences, Jose found himself to be the only participant, visitor, and fluent English speaker in the village. The two months that followed resulted in being completely immersed in daily life of rural Ghana. In addition to documenting this visceral experience with sound recordings, photos, and a journal, he independently shifted the residency project to the design and construction of an exterior theatre for the youth dance and drumming group. The project was built with local materials and used traditional Ghanian methods of construction. Today, the space also serves as a meeting area where members of the community can gather to celebrate social events. The entirety of the project was personally funded, including compensation for the laborers who assisted in acquiring materials and with the construction.

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