Ecological Design and Build Extravaganza 2016
Date(s) - Jun 5 - Jul 30
What It’s All About:
We have a full build – start to finish experience of a ‘new on the scene’ highly innovative building technology we are working with:
Module 1: The Big World of Natural Building
(June 5 – 17, 2016)
An excursion to Natural Homes in the Region completes the introduction and gets our minds ready to begin building and designing.
Module 2 + 3 = Tiny Month – House of Small
Module 2: Everything Tiny!
(June 19 – July 1, 2016)
Jump into learning what else you might consider for your affordable and efficient housing option!
Module 3: TINY HOME COB HOUSE
(July 4 – July 16)
Join this great project of TINY proportions to help everyone who wishes to build a TINY HOME understand what is involved in the design and construction of such a space! This is a home spun example of how you can build a living space that is easily used for living, a studio/office, or guest space. Have fun as an individual learner or bring your family at a great group rate, if you are a home owner builder, or if you wish to ‘green’ your tool belt as a conventional construction/trades person, this course is for you. It will very much bring you forward in the overall building process with earthen construction and what is needed for all aspects of the building design/build.
Module 4: Finishing for Beauty and Longevity and Grand Finale
(July 18 – 30th, 2016)
During the 8-week course, participants will learn how to:
• locate and identify materials\
• design and layout a natural building
• install doors and windows
• mix and build with bio-fibre blocks, cob, and other earth building techniques
• build a living roof
• build an earthen floor
• mix and apply finishing plasters
• learn repair techniques and maintenance for earthen buildings
There will also be theory classes, where we will cover:
• foundations for natural homes
• composting toilets and grey-water systems
• codes and permits
• plumbing and electrical
• heating, cooling and earthen floors
• roof designs
• earthen plasters and natural finishes
• working with lime
• a general Q&A session
Elke Cole is one of Canada’s first cob builders. She brings rich experience of building and teaching on 4 continents. She is involved in projects in Cameroon, Tanzania, Germany and Tamil Nadu and has played a key role in the development of O.U.R.Ecovillage. The interaction of humans with home and place are central to Elke’s work. She brings a background of architecture, Permaculture, and Inclusive leadership training, and is happiest when working with joyful people creating with mud. We will bring Elke in by Skype and long distance classes!
Pat Hennebery, owner of Cobworks, will be on site to work with the team. He brings creative ideas of bringing together cob and wood, and the spirit of natural building in combination with the business of construction. About his history with cob, he says: “I took my first cob workshop in 1997 with Cob Cottage Company. It was only a week long but I quickly realized ‘Hey, I was made for this.’ Since then, I have gone on to teach 45 workshops and build 25 cob homes, including two restaurants and a 2000 sq.ft. recording studio. I also facilitate cob workshops in Mexico during the winter months and have been associated with OUR Ecovillage’s Natural Building program since 2012.” Pat is a part time builder who will come in for special classes.
Ayla Challenger loves the hands-on creativity that natural finishes allow and got to pursue this love of natural finishes over the spring, summer and fall of 2011 as a skillbuilder and continuing intern at O.U.R. Ecovillage learning and working with Elke Cole and Cindy Walker. In 2012, she coordinated and co-taught the Natural Building Skillbuilder, taught the plaster workshop in Robert Laporte’s Econest Intensive, and co-lead Cob in Community with Pat Hennebery at O.U.R. Ecovillage. She continues to work with O.U.R. Ecovillage as a plasterer and natural finish teacher. In 2013 she started her own company, Au Naturale Finishes and has done a number of projects working with clay and lime plasters in particular, but her real passion is doing Tadelakt, a water-resistant Moroccan finish. This year she will be joining us with her lovely Daughter Lumi!
Cindy Walker lives near Nelson, BC and started natural building in 2001 by building her own cob home with Elke Cole. At that time, natural plasters were relatively new in BC, so she went to New Mexico and Arizona to learn from experts in the field, such as Athena. In 2007, Cindy started a business near Nelson, specializing in natural plasters & woodchip clay building. The focus has been to develop high quality natural plaster & paint methods, as well as training crews and homeowners.
Athena Steen is a master plasterer who calls Canelo, Arizona home. In 1989 with her partner Bill, she co-founded the Canelo Project, a non-profit organization whose work centres on connecting people, culture, and nature. The focal point of Athena and Bill’s work is handcrafting simple, small-scale and comfortable shelters that are built primarily with local and natural materials. In that pursuit, they have evolved a unique straw bale and clay wall system that is finished with beautiful clay and lime plasters, sculptural wall carvings, earthen floors and clay ovens. Throughout her career, Athena has also taught and worked extensively in Mexico, taught workshops and lectured throughout Europe and the United States.
Other instructors and guest presenters will be joining the program, be ready for some special surprise guests!
Who Should Take This Course
Getting a range of the building basics with a large splash of creativity is the focus to consider when choosing this course.
We will be interviewing each participant and setting goals and discussing expectations to understand your focus. There’s room to bring in your personal topic and tailor your experience.
About OUR Farm, Demonstration Site, and Education Centre
With years of Permaculture Design shaping the lands and processes of OUR Ecovillage since 1999, most of life revolves around the inter-connectivity of systems and people. OUR has almost nine acres in food production and food security systems linking livestock, poultry, dairy, greenhouses, raised beds, orchards, and row crops. We aspire to serve the most nutritious, mostly organic, yummy meals while serving diverse needs of food preferences and allergies (see OUR Food Manifesto). The program is designed so that all participants are integrated into community life (outside of your 40-hour a week course) through the ‘Care Schedule,’ meeting facilitation, and assisting with the learning of others.
Dates* and Tuition:
• Natural Building Extravaganza Complete (Modules 1–4: June 5–July 30 (8 weeks)): $4900(savings of $1100)
• Module 1: The Big World of Natural Building and Design (June 5–17, 2016): $1600
• Module 2: Just Biofibre – Hempcrete Building (June 19– July 1, 2016): $1600
• Module 3: Tiny Home Cob House (July 4–16, 2016):$1600
• Module 4: Finishing for Beauty and Longevity and Grand Finale (July 18–30, 2016):$1600
How to Apply
1. Please email: