Tiebele's traditional adobe houses

Ouagadougou’s architecture can tend towards the modern and functional and its streets may at times overflow with hawkers and traffic, so Tiebele, a village some 150km south, can feel like a release, an indulgence, after time spent in Burkina Faso’s capital. Better still, here, in the rural calm of the low hills that roll into neighbouring Ghana, lie a collection of extraordinary buildings that have made Tiebele famous. The square and circular-shaped traditional adobe houses of the Gourounsi people feature beautiful, detailed abstract frescoes of geometric patterns, the artwork done by the women of the village. The buildings are at once both striking and at one with the surrounding landscape, the black diamonds and multi-coloured columns emblazoned across the red-brown houses all complementing and enriching the surrounding ochre earth, all adding to the feeling that exploring Tiebele is like wandering around a living outdoors art gallery.   

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