Julia Watson’s lush new book, Lo-TEK: Design by Radical Indigenism, provides a blueprint for sustainable architecture in the 21st century. According to Watson “Lo-TEK,” is built on “lesser known technologies, traditional ecological knowledge (TEK) and indigenous cultural practices and mythologies, which explore the space where design and “radical indigenism” meet.
Lo-TEK: Design by Radical Indigenism, a book by Julia Watson, invites readers to discover millennia-old societies living, and thriving, in symbiosis with nature thanks to local ingenuity, creativity, spirituality, and resourcefulness.
Watson explores the intersection between design and “radical indigenism,” a term conceived by Princeton professor and Cherokee Nation member Eva Marie Goutte. Radical indigenism encourages us to look to indigenous philosophies to rebuild our knowledge base and generate new dialogues across genres.
“I realized that all of these high-tech, repackaged, nature-based, eco-technologies come from a long lineage of indigenous technologies and knowledge. We can look to cultures that have been living with natural systems and understanding how to develop civilizations with complex ecosystems as a grounding for moving forward as designers,” Watson explains. “It’s a movement toward rethinking how urbanism interacts with nature.”