In 2003 I took an African Architecture class at City College in San Francisco. It was during this time that my interest in the ethical reasons for building with sustainable materials began to grow, as well as the sheer beauty and magnificence of hand built communities. I saw the Mosque built in the 13th Century in Djenne, Mali – a striking feat of architecture and sculpture, and the inspiration for my residency project ‘The Cunnicle’, at the De Young in 2006.

A friend referred me to a project to build an earth toolshed in a S.L.U.G garden in San Francisco. This is where I met kat Sawyer and Surren they had designed a tool shed made from ‘Cobb’, with a live roof. They needed help to complete the project and I saw an opportunity get some hands on experience with an earth architecture project before I headed off to Mozambique. This technique of earth building requires a lot of stomping around in the mud. I made life long friendships, and learned about the organic process of building with earth, as the project changed and evolved.