“One of the first hits I got when I was googling about female architecture was a high-rise building in Australia, whose architects said that they had been inspired by Beyoncé’s curves when they built it,” exclaimed the Dutch architect Afaina de Jong in her last talk for TEDxAmsterdamWomen in 2021. “I mean, really? Her body? Beyoncé? Of course, she is amazing, but to translate her body literally in a building… Is that female architecture?”, she continued indignantly.
De Jong is the founder of AFARAI studio, where she works with an interdisciplinary methodology combining theory and research with design. She considers her studio as “a feminist practice that encourages change on social and spatial issues and that accommodates differences,” so Afaina is likely familiar with the concept of ‘intersectionality’.