The woman behind stunning sustainable homes from bamboo.
by Derek Markham
Elora Hardy and her team of designers, artisans, and builders at Ibuku are reimagining sustainable building, using one of nature’s strongest and most versatile materials.
Bamboo has the compressive strength of concrete, the same strength-to-weight ratio of steel, and can regenerate itself in just a few short years. It’s also flexible, beautiful, and resilient, and serves as an effective carbon sequestration channel.
Sounds great, right? So why aren’t more buildings made from this wonder material? Because bamboo is a wild grass, it’s also round, hollow, and tapered, and presents unique challenges to those who build with it. The material lends itself more easily to bespoke homes than to conventional and mass-produced houses, which have a ready source of straight, square, and uniform wood, thanks to the well-established timber industry.
One inspiring woman and her team of craftsmen in Bali are working to change that, one incredible bamboo structure at a time, because they believe that bamboo’s potential is underestimated, and that it should be used to house many more people around the world, especially in the tropics.
Here’s Elora Hardy, founder and creative director of Ibuku, speaking at a TED conference about the potential of this incredible natural building material:
“The strength of this abundant local grass allows for towering, curvilinear structures with a notable sense of luminosity and comfort. Ibuku builds on a design process and an engineering system that were first established at the nearby Green School. Five years ago, Elora and her team chose one humble material, and with it they are building a whole new world.” – TED
And the bamboo revolution doesn’t stop at the skin of the house, because Ibuku also creates beautiful and sustainable furnishings for the insides of the buildings, almost entirely from bamboo and other natural and local materials.
more on: treehugger.com