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UJ Architectural student scoops top prize at Annual Corobrik Regional Competition

​Ms Sarah Treherne, an architectural graduate from the Graduate School of Architecture (GSA) within the Faculty of Arts, Design and Architecture (FADA) at the University of Johannesburg (UJ), recently won the regional awards for the 31st Corobrik Architectural Student of the Year Award ceremony, which took place in January 2018. Ms Treherne won first prize for her presentation on her thesis entitled, “The Subverse: Monuments to Hypertextuality.” She now proceeds to the finals of the Corobrik Architectural Student of the Year Awards, which will be held in Johannesburg, on April 2018.

The event, dubbed as the Fourth Industrial Revolution extravaganza, welcomed young architects from across the country competing to be named the best architectural creatives.

Musa Shangase, Corobrik Commercial Director, said that Corobrik was extremely proud to recognise works of excellence that would be the mainstays of the architectural map of the future.

“At first reading, parables and fairy-tales may appear to have little do with architecture, but architecture is as much concerned with communication and storytelling as it is with shelter. The Subverse: Monuments to Hypertextuality is a series of six stage sets that harness the dual nature of fiction and theatre to confront the sensitive themes of privilege, patrimony, corruption, and collusion in post-apartheid South Africa. Set in the hyper-politicised suburb of Saxonwold, The Subverse generates a surreal landscape of socio-political enquiry,” explained Ms Treherne.

“Theatrical tactics – such as metaphor, diversion, juxtaposition, absurdity, and fairy-tale – are used to reconfigure familiar narratives of historical events, landmarks and monuments in order to reveal an alternative narrative, the sub-verse, of past and present South African politics.”

Treherne concluded saying: “‘Hypertext’ describes embedded links and the endless layers of information that form a vast web of cross-referencing between sites – in this case, between the six-stage sets. Each layer of meaning conceals another, and with each tactical transformation, the resultant architecture becomes the stage on which a new story is enacted.”

At the ceremony, the winner Sarah Treherne received first prize and an award of R8 500 while Mandy Shindler and Sabine Waskow shared the runner- up place each received R5 500.00. A R4 500 prize for the best use of clay masonry was also presented to Armand Barnard.

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