About Us

FutureSpaces is a platform for South African architects and interior designers and their clients; developers and homeowners.  

Architects and interior designers can share their work, be inspired by local and international best practice and share issues they feel are key to the success of architecture and interior spaces. Feature writers highlight key building trends, sustainability issues, the business practice of architecture and interior architecture in the South African economy and celebrate work well done. 

For developers and homeowners it provides informative and fresh points of view on alternate building materials and design solutions for the future. Our feature writers will review spaces that have embraced new materials and worked towards efficient approaches that yield high performance and beautiful spaces. 

Arthur Barker - Editor

Img Arthur
Arthur Barker

A vision for FutureSpaces

Having recently been approached to curate content for the Future Spaces website, and having trolled the internet to see what critical and useful architectural content there is, I lament the lack of interrogation in the discipline and the seeming lapse into mundaneness of many architectural products (and here I use the term purposefully).

It would be naïve to suggest that there are no difficulties that built environment professionals have to face on a daily basis, such as competitive tendering, limited funds and skills limitations. But, if we are to accept that at its core architecture needs to make a better place than existed before, then we need to use our creativity to rise above these exigencies.

I believe that five categories of influence (by no means a conclusive or exhaustive list) namely: identity, legacy, memory, security and ethics can inform an interrogative production of architecture in South Africa. I would like to bring these aspects to the fore this year and am hopeful that by doing so, we will be able to engage more deeply with the creative possibilities in the discipline. I will use buildings, student work, exhibitions, conferences, competitions, awards and published works to elicit relative content that expose 'other' ways of making architecture. I am hopeful that through this process we can all rethink our ways of working and improve on our contributions to the built environment.

Who is Arthur Barker?

I am an architect and academic. My qualifications include two diplomas in architecture from the Cape Peninsula University of Technology (then the Cape Technikon) and two degrees in architecture from the University of Cape Town. In 1999, I received a Commonwealth Scholarship and completed a Master's degree in Environmental Engineering and Design at the Bartlett School of Graduate Studies, University College London. In 2012, I received a PhD degree for a study on the domestic architecture of the seminal South African architect, Gawie Fagan.

I have worked for Richard Siefert and Partners in London, the Cape Provincial Administration and KMH Architects in Cape Town. A limited private architectural practice was undertaken between 1997 and 2003 and from 2004 to 2009 I was part of a joint practice Barker Lourens Architects in Cape Town.

In 1996, I taught part-time at the University of Cape Town and in 1997 took up a full-time post at Cape Technikon where I remained till 2009. I co-ordinated the 4th year BTech Applied Design programme from 1998 onwards and received a Merit Award for outstanding teaching achievement in 1998 and a distinguished teachers award in 2001. I was acting Head of Department in 1998. I also set up and ran an NRF sponsored housing research programme and published papers on energy efficiency in low-income housing at two international and three local conferences.

In 2010, I was appointed lecturer at the University of Pretoria where I currently co-ordinate the final year Masters Programme, Design teaching, the Heritage and Cultural Landscapes research field and the Departmental archive. I have examined at Durban, Cape Peninsula and Tshwane Universities of Technology and the Universities of Johannesburg, Free State, Pretoria, Natal, Port Elizabeth and Cape Town. I have also been an accreditation board panellist for the South African Council for the Architectural Profession.

My views on architecture, on this website, are my own and are not associated with any architectural practice, academic institution or product manufacturer.

Kerry Henning - Marketing Manager

Kerry Henning

Kerry Henning, Saint-Gobain Gyproc’s Marketing Manager has a keen interest in digital communication, thought leadership and the role of corporate brands in developing and engaging with their markets.

She is a Chartered Public Relations Practitioner (Public Relations Institute of South Africa) with 12 years marketing and PR experience; holds a bachelor’s degree (BBA) in Marketing Communication and has various Project Management and Digital Marketing qualifications and experience.

For more information on Saint-Gobain Gyproc visit www.gyproc.co.za