During this online lecture, architect Marta Maccaglia shared the work of Semillas, a nonprofit organization she founded in Perú in 2014 and based in Lima, Pangoa (Junín region), and San Ignacio (Cajamarca region). Consisting of an interdisciplinary team, Semillas develops architectural projects in marginalized contexts, mainly in the settlements of Lima and the rural areas of the Peruvian Amazon. The firm’s aim is to revitalize these areas, which are often abandoned by state policies, and create respectful and high-quality teaching environments. Its work utilizes participatory practices as they believe they are an effective way of promoting cooperation between institutions, knowledge exchange, and sustainable development. Semillas has worked on a diverse range of public projects across Perú, including schools, community-based, cultural, and residential commissions. Key projects of Semillas include the Primary School Jerusalén de Miñaro (2017) and the Nursery and Primary School Union Alto Sanibeni (2019), the Community Center for the Otica native community (2019), and the Alto Anapati pre-school (2021). Semillas’s projects have been awarded at the Venice Biennale, the Quito Biennial, and the BIAU (Ibero-American Biennial of Architecture and Urbanism) among others.
Among many other awards and recognitions, Maccaglia is the recipient of the 2023 Diversity in Architecture Prize (DIVIA), the World Prize in Sustainable Architecture 2018 awarded by the Cite de la architecture and sponsored by UNESCO, and the Excellence in teaching from the University of Sciences and Arts of Latin America (Ucal) in 2018.
The work of Semillas is included in the exhibition A Lot With Little curated by London-based architect and curator Noemí Blager with films by Tapio Snellman. The exhibition, supported by Arper, is presented in Chicago by MAS Context. During this event, curator Noemí Blager provided a brief overview of the main ideas behind A Lot With Little.