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Hassan Fathy

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Works New Gourna, at Near Luxor, Egypt, 1948.

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Biography Hassan Fathy

(b. Egypt, 1899; d. 1989)

Hassan Fathy was born in Egypt in 1899. He established a private practice in Cairo where he also worked as professor of Fine Arts and Head of the Architectural School, at the University of Cairo.

An Egyptian architect who devoted himself to housing the poor in developing nations, Hassan Fathy deserves study by anyone involved in rural improvement. Fathy worked to create an indigenous environment at a minimal cost, and in so doing to improve the economy and the standard of living in rural areas.

Fathy utilized ancient design methods and materials. He integrated a knowledge of the rural Egyptian economic situation with a wide knowledge of ancient architectural and town design techniques. He trained local inhabitants to make their own materials and build their own buildings.

Climatic conditions, public health considerations, and ancient craft skills also affected his design decisions. Based on the structural massing of ancient buildings, Fathy incorporated dense brick walls and traditional courtyard forms to provide passive cooling.

Muriel Emmanuel. Contemporary Architects. New York: St. Martin's Press, 1980. ISBN 0-312-16635-4. NA 680-C625. p244.

Resources Sources on Hassan Fathy

Hassan Fathy. Architecture for the Poor : An Experiment in Rural Egypt. University of Chicago Press, March 1976. ISBN 0226239160.   Available at Amazon.com

Hassan Fathy, Walter Shearer (Editor). Natural Energy and Venacular Architecture : Principles and Examples, With Reference to Hot Arid Climates. University of Chicago Press, September 1986. ISBN 0226239179.   Available at Amazon.com

James Steele. An Architecture for People : The Complete Works of Hassan Fathy. Whitney Library of Design, October 1997. ISBN 0823002268.   Available at Amazon.com


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