As a project for Scotland’s 2016 Festival of Architecture we invited Bobby Niven of The Bothy Project to curate an exhibition on the theme of shelter. He had long been an admirer of the work of Lloyd Kahn whose iconic Shelter Publications imprint has introduced international audiences over the last 50 years to a multitude of self-build structures from traditional vernacular techniques to geodesic domes, sheds, converted vehicles and fantastical individualistic creations using whatever comes to hand.
At Kirkcaldy Galleries visitors were met with a wall covered in a vast array of images from the books as well as a focus on the human stories behind a number of case studies. Tables and benches made by Fife’s Wood Monkey allowed browsing of the original publications with tiny versions and art activities available at a child-sized table. In an adjoining space some Scottish examples were highlighted including Kevin Langan’s 100 Wild Huts project. As part of this, a time-lapse film recording was made of a temporary hut built from foraged material at Braefoot Bay on the Fife coast. Also featured were the unique artist bothies Bobby designed as forerunners to his current Bothy business with its Bothy Stores distributing commissioned items specially designed for Bothy use.
In May 2016 we were thrilled to bring over Lloyd Kahn and his craft artist wife Lesley Creed from California to give a sold-out lecture in Kirkcaldy which brought together fans from as far away as Bristol. Many in the audience were attending a Scottish hut conference timed to coincide. Lloyd and Lesley celebrated his 80th birthday with travels around Scotland including Eigg where they stayed in the artist Bothy. Many quirky Scottish buildings were photographed on the way.
Lloyd Kahn was to be featured in this year’s Venice Architecture Biennale. Cancelled due to the Covid-19 pandemic it may hopefully be re-scheduled and a new audience introduced to this inspired ‘non-architect’.
Click here to visit the original web page which includes free downloadable information sheets, and a link to the time-lapse film.