News TEDx

Remembering Ross Langdon: TEDx speaker and humanitarian architect killed in Nairobi attack

Posted by: Hailey Reissman
Ross Langdon speaks at TEDxKrakow. The architect will be very missed.

Ross Langdon spoke at TEDxKrakow on “chameleon architecture.” He will be very missed.

On September 21, gunmen attacked a shopping mall in Nairobi, killing at least 67 people, with many others still missing. We are extraordinarily saddened to hear that among the victims of this violence were TEDxKraków speaker Ross Langdon and his partner Elif Yavuz.

Ross, an architect by trade, gave a beautiful talk at TEDxKraków 2012 about “chameleon architecture,” structures he built in places like Rwanda, Uganda and Tanzania made of local materials. They’re designed to complement communities, not disrupt them — something he was clearly passionate about. Before his death, Ross designed an HIV-AIDS hopistal in Kenya — pro bono — and was working on plans for a museum based on the first fossil records of humanoids walking.

TEDxKraków organizer Ewa Spohn shared her memories of Langdon with us:

“From our very first conversation about his talk at TEDxKraków, it was clear that Ross loved his profession and was devoted to it, but he approached it with a lightness that made him a joy to work with. His commitment to the potential of architecture to improve people’s lives was clear and he took the architect’s responsibility for the environment very seriously. We think this comes across in his talk. We’re just grateful that we managed to record it so that everyone can see the potential for good that was destroyed through this senseless act of murder.”

This post originally appeared on the TEDx Blog.