Hip Hop Architecture

Hip Hop Architecture.Build It Up!

The Hip Hop Architecture Camp uses real world architecture skills and sociological study to design, plan and map a new vision for the community or contribute to creative peacemaking initiatives. Over the course of four Saturdays in Madison, 50+ camp participants were afforded the chance to build physical models of an ideal community based on an evaluation of their immediate environments and the design solutions proposed during the camp. 

The camp was created by The Hip Hop Architect, Mike Ford, and brought to fruition with many partners, including the hard work, connections and skills pouring out of Rob Dz and Michael Dando. With the mission to introduce traditionally marginalized or underrepresented youth to architecture, urban planning and economic development through the lens of Hip Hop culture, the initiative allows students and community members to engage in re-mixing the visions for their communities and neighborhoods in ways that are culturally relevant, sustaining, and responsive. Planners from the City of Madison are using the content from the camp to inform the "people power planning" of Imagine Madison.

The camp has future dates in Milwaukee, Chicago, Detroit and Atlanta.

an anthem



While attending the Hip Hop Architecture Camp, a subset of six teens worked with local hip-hop and spoken word artist Rob Dz to write and record the song "Build It Up" by blending the major conversations points from the camp with their own experiences and opinions. Special thanks to Bradley "DLO" Thomas for supplying the beat to which we bob our heads.

The the creative team at MOD Media used the architecture of Central Library as the backdrop to shoot the "Build It Up" video, the first music video released from The Hip Hop Architecture Camp.

Music Video [MOD Media / Rob Dz]




Then MOD Media used all of their footage to put together a documentary about the goals and takeaways of the 4-day camp.

Documentary [MOD Media]