New Gourna Ring
Hassan Fathy inspired architects around the world to build for local populations using local materials and modern architectural practices and techniques. He was a pioneer of sustainable architecture. One of the best encapsulations of this design philosophy is the village of New Gourna.
New Gourna was commissioned by the government of Egypt as a relocation of New Gourna near Luxor and it was meant to be a prototype for a solution to the rural housing problem in Egypt. Fathy’s idealism and humanity lead him to design each dwelling around the inhabitants rather than having a single unit that would be replicated for all. He intended to include the inhabitants in the design process, however, their displeasure at being relocated led to complications - which coupled with financial and political complications ensured that New Gourna was never completed. Despite the tragedy of New Gourna, it does still house a vibrant community and in 2010, the World Monuments Fund partnered with UNESCO to assess the current situation in New Gourna and work towards preserving it for the future.
If you would like to learn more, the story of New Gourna is chronicled in Fathy’s book “Architecture for the Poor”.
For this piece, we took the arches that are an ever-present motif in New Gourna and created this dainty ring. Each ring is handmade to order, so please anticipate a 2-4 week processing time.
5% of proceeds will be donated to Refugees International.
About Hassan Fathy -
Hassan Fathy (1900-1989) was a professor, philosopher, painter, journalist, playwright, inventor, and Egypt's best-known architect of the 20th century. Known as the “Architect for the Poor”, Fathy used indigenous materials to build accessible centers for housing and collective living and helped Egyptian architecture find its voice in a post-colonial world. He emphasized environment, traditions, spirituality, culture, and humankind’s role within it when designing and realizing buildings.