Making Natural Building Mainstream, the Future of the NBA
Panel discussion with Doug, Cappie, and Lola about how we make natural building mainstream. There will also be a conversation about the future of the Natural Building Alliance.
Jared 'Cappie' Capp
Owner of Pangea Design Group and Black Hills Homestead, star of Building Off the Grid: Spearfish Canyon (as seen on Discovery Channel).
I have been an active builder, designer, artist, and metalworker most of my adult life. Born and raised in Spearfish, SD, upon graduation I enlisted in the US Air Force, which took me around the world as a C-130 Loadmaster. The broad range of design and construction techniques seen in my travels over the years, specifically with natural, local, and recycled materials, has influenced me a great deal.
I currently work with clients on design/build projects that range from treehouses to commercial properties. My goals in the building community include: to increase the quality of life for my clients and the following generations that live in the space; to legitimize local, natural, and recycled materials and building practices as a viable alternative in the eyes of clients, architects, engineers, professional builders, and code officials; reduce or eliminate ongoing costs for utilities and maintenance.
Lola Ben-Alon is an engineer, curator, and Ph.D. candidate at the at the
Architecture, Engineering and Construction Management (AECM) Program at Carnegie
Mellon University. She specializes in socially and environmentally sustainable building
practices, natural building materials, and engineering-architecture collaborations.
She has earned her BS in Structural Engineering and MS in Construction Management, both
cum laude, from the Civil and Environmental Engineering program at the Technion, Israel
Institute of Technology. Her doctoral research deals with Life Cycle Assessments (LCA),
perception, and building policy of earthen construction.
Parallel to her engineering background, Lola has earned a diploma in Critical and Curatorial
Studies at the Technion, where she has co-founded art.espionage, the Experimental Art and
Architecture Lab. She has exhibited various interactive urban interventions, public art, and
performance art in museums and galleries around the world, including the Shanghai Biennale
Gallery and Tel-Aviv Art Museum. She has also served as a curator and content developer at
the Madatech, Israel National Museum of Science, Technology, and Space.
Lola is passionate about fostering connections between academia and community, by
promoting social engagement in the production of the built environment. She is the academic
advisor of the TERRA Collaborative, an all-women organization that provides hands-on
natural building training for women and youth in developing communities. Through sharing
skills and knowledge that promote healthy and affordable living environments, Lola hopes to
diversify the building industry and to catalyze new intersections and creative dialogues among
the various disciplines of architecture, engineering, art, and sociology.