Rajkumari Ratnavati Girl's School
Jaisalmer, India

Commissioned by a nonprofit organisation that supports development in some of the world’s most economically challenged and geographically remote areas, the school is the first building of a planned complex that will include a community centre and women’s cooperative. It serves over 400 girls from kindergarten to class 10, living below the poverty line in a desert region where female literacy is barely 36%. Its elliptical form symbolises empowerment, femininity, and infinity. Sustainably built of hand-carved local sandstone by local craftsmen including some of the girls’ fathers, it blends with surrounding sand dunes, while its walls recall Jaisalmer’s fort. The parapet is a reinvention of jali screen walls traditionally used for privacy. This and the solar canopy on the roof - which doubles as a play space with seesaws, swings, and hammocks - keep heat out while letting air flow through. Furniture was made locally, of rosewood with charpai woven seating.

Source: Aga Khan Trust for Culture

Jaisalmer, India
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Completed 2020
2'478 m²
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