“The social element of our architecture is the most important for us”

n archipelago of 10 volcanic isles, Cape Verde sits at the confluence of Africa, Europe and South America. It’s here, at the edge of continents, that architects Eloisa Ramos (a native of Santo Antão, in the northern part of the chain) and Moreno Castellano (who hails from Sardinia in Italy) create their distinctive work. From a museum clad in reclaimed oil drums to a hotel incorporating recycled metal cans, adaptation has become a hallmark if not a necessity of their practice as it negotiates a scarcity of resources while consciously employing its work as an economic generator that supports local industries. Since establishing RamosCastellano Arquitectos 15 years ago, the duo has developed a distinct handling of space and materiality, one that addresses the particular challenges of building in from their studio in the port city of Mindelo, on the island of São Vicente, they have done so while situating their inhabitants and the surrounding community firmly at the centre of their work.

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