SAIA-KZN Exhibition – Segregation & Integration

Welcome to the “News” section of our website. We’ll be using this platform to keep you up to date on our projects, as well as to share media and other items of interest.

To kick things off, we’ll start with a series that will allow us to provide insight into the legacy of FGG Architects.

In mid-2019 we were invited by the KwaZulu-Natal arm of the South African Institute of Architects (SAIA-KZN) to put on an exhibition showcasing and celebrating FGG Architects as a firm.

Opening of the exhibition by Pat Smith.

There was no set brief for the theme of the evening, but we were required to fill the venue with relevant material and to give a presentation to those in attendance. The evening would coincide with the SAIA’s First Thursdays, so attendance was great.

We decided to put together an exhibition that was based loosely around the title of director Jeremy Hathorn’s presentation from the 2018 ArchitectureZA conference, “Segregation & Integration”, about the historical importance of the UKZN Medical School and the K-RITH Building project. The K-RITH project would go on to win a SAIA National Award of Merit at the same conference.

An in-house working model of The Hilton Hotel.

This theme would give us an opportunity to dust off material from our archives, the bulk of it being from the late 1980s through to the early 2000s, representative of a transitional period in our country’s history. The early 1990’s was a difficult time for many architectural practices, as political uncertainty put strain on development and the building industry.

Some of the photos and sketches on display.

FGG Architects was fortunate to have two very different flagship projects underway at the time to ease the transition. One being the Durban Hilton Hotel, the other the New Durban Academic Hospital (NDAH), which would become the Inkosi Albert Luthuli Central Hospital before completion.

Most of the exhibition featured hand drawn plans, sketches, and hand made models built in-house, as it was done at the time. There were a number of items that wouldn’t be found in most practices today.

To supplement the exhibition we created a timeline of FGG’s history, with each decade represented by at least one project on an A1 poster, starting in 1953 with Hilton College and culminating in 2019 with the Epworth School Organ and The Falls shopping centre in Howick.

A section of the timeline on display.

The projects were chosen for various reason, not necessarily for their size or significance, but to showcase the variety of work done by the firm over the years. During the next few weeks we’ll be sharing the timeline on this channel and across social media.

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    • James
      5 months ago - Reply

      Great to have some insight into the firm. Keep it up.