The A4E Story

The buildings we build today are really not sustainable, in most cases. They use resources that cannot be replenished, produce incredible amounts of waste, don’t work well for their environments, and increase our dependency on mining machines, manufacturing machines, energy-making machines, and automobiles. All of this takes energy and money, which could otherwise be spent for the good of our families.

I have studied and trained with renown professionals in the field of architecture over the past 20 years. When I started going blind, I asked myself, "Okay now what?" and I decided that I would reach outward to share what I had learned about great design with the 98% of people who cannot afford the services of an Architect. I want to help people build a better architectural future for themselves from RIGHT WHERE THEY ARE using readily available and free- or low-cost resources. I gave my first TEDx talk about this subject in 2011 at TEDxABQ. Many other lectures, tours, and conferences have followed.

In 2013, I started acting locally, starting to build the foundation for our Built for Life television show (currently in funraising and pre-production). For the show, I want to bring an understanding of our architecture back to the people of New Mexico. I want to get people excited about the old tricks and tools that we can implement today to help us to achieve true sustainability.

Over time, I became WE. We have many collaborators around the world now, thanks to partnering with the UNM-Taos Green Technology program's Sustainability Institute and others, and we can help anyone in any climate to make their buildings work better for them, and help them to reduce their dependence on technology. We just released our first collective book, Hacking the Earthship.

Our next steps are to produce a series of articles, public talks, and short videos that share architectural tips from a wide range of experts who can engage people in a collective transformation of design.

We believe that we can shift the paradigm. We believe our work is to make architecture relevant for #TheOther98Percent. That way, we help people be more comfortable, be happier, and enjoy their lives more. We can help them restore their communities and preserve their cultural resources. We’ll also help people reduce their dependence on energy and, at a larger scale, minimize the extraction of more natural resources for bad buildings that do not perform well in their climate.

Join us, won't you? 

Brightest Blessings
Rachel Preston Prinz
Founding Director


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