Michaela Solnická
alternative urban furniture, spinning shaders, playful installation not necessarily considered playground, intended for everyone regardless of age

Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso / Prague, Czech Republic
multidimensional experimental practice focused on innovative yet low-tech methods with locally resourced energy and materials
Team members
Souleymane Kone
Michaela Solnicka
Field of work
Architecture, Design, Landscape architecture, Ecology, Visual Art
Project category
Public space
Project submitted

Visual artist, designer, photographer and architect of Czech origin, based in Burkina Faso since 2012, when she joined the JCA - Jakub Cigler Architekti team. Searching for environmental and social balance she co-initiated the unlimitedJCA, a pro-bono and experimental department of the studio JCA, that responded to many collaborative creative projects with socio-cultural visionaries. One of those was JUMP, the association from Ouagadougou, that wanted to design a shared place of work, a pole of collaboration as a driving mechanism of networking and interactions. With this in mind, she designed JUMPHUB, mainly as an independent residence for JUMP, but also as a safe space to develop ideas and to encourage creativity and as a showcase of artworks. Since 2016, she has merged her universe with the choreographer Ladji Kone to create the multidisciplinary company Ciel K. This, three-year professional training in dance and her academic research on aesthetics bring her to discover the new dimensions of creation with artists involved on stage or in production studios. This open approach and the emphasis on complicity maintains her dynamism, empathy, perpetual questioning without prejudice. Empowered by moments spent with people during production of ideas, they continue with Ladji to invent opportunities to foster solidarity, openness and trust within their community.

Tournette is an alternative urban furniture, rotating chairs, mobile shading screens, playful installations that are not necessarily considered playgrounds, intended for everyone regardless of age. The connection of play, design and dance, which builds on trust, cooperation and movement in society. Production of the duo of Czech designer and architect Michaela Solnická Volná with Burkinabe choreographer and dancer Souleymane Ladji Kone, who have been creating under the name Ciel K for several years.
The mentoring of the Trust in Play program, together with the co-production of the Czech studio unlimitedJCA / Jakub Cigler Architekti, made it possible to playfully explore new bonds of trust in cities, and especially in Ouagadougou, the capital of Burkina Faso, where Ciel K operates. The aim was to develop something imperishable but changeable, something playful but not grotesque, something tangible serving as an imprint of trust. Trust and interest of society.
Under the Sahel sun: The context of Ouagadougou was crucial. The sharp sun and almost year-round temperatures of around forty degrees force local residents to conserve energy in the shade. But this does not mean that the city is stagnant. Ouagadougou is a city on the move, spreading invisibly at lightning speed while facing such challenges as sustainability of urban life, education and awareness, social balance, emancipation, democracy, peace and stability. Like most African capitals, Ouagadougou is undergoing a complete transformation!
Body and movement: The discussion with the professional dancers about the body was absolutely crucial. The ergonomics of each structure is based on understanding the intended movement and comfortable position. Trust, dependence and closeness take on a new dimension in the context of the pandemic. As easily as one can turn and approach a Tournette, one can kick away and keep a physical distance.