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Chozos, Houses of Nomadic Shepherds

Submitted by

Alba Balmaseda Dominguez Kyra Bullert Špela Setzen


The chozos are traditional huts that up until about 50 years ago were built by shepherds in rural Spain as they moved around the fields with their sheep. This chozo was constructed in September 2022 by sixteen students from the University of Stuttgart during an intense exchange with experts in southern Spain.

The students spent two weeks in Cabeza del Buey, a village in Extremadura, constructing two chozos. One was built in a traditional manner and remained on site; the other was demountable, and transported from Spain to Germany after the workshop, where it was displayed at the University of Stuttgart at scale 1:1.

As Spaniards and Germans poured their knowledge, doubts, and enthusiasm into building this chozos with 100% natural and local materials, situations arose that could only be solved through intuition and know-how, resulting in an intense exchange of tacit knowledge through learning-by-doing.

Submitted by
Alba Balmaseda Domínguez, Kyra Bullert and Špela Setzen from the Faculty of Architecture and Urban Planning of the University of Stuttgart. The activity is a partnership between the 1zu1 platform and the departments IRGE (Institut für Raumkonzeptionen und Grundlagen des Entwerfens) and SuE (Lehrstuhl Stadtplanung und Entwerfen). The project has been supported by Sto-Stiftung, the municipality of Cabeza del Buey and the Spanish Embassy in Switzerland.

Students: Lucas Apfelsbacher, Kim Bache, Konrad Bornemann, Friedhelm Christ, Sophia Frischmuth, Vroni Geiselbrechtinger, Valentin Kiesel, Julia Knölker, Marie Kuch, Lilian Paczkowski, Johannes Pfaff, Yannik Pfaff, Inga Schmidt, Mahnaz Shahriyari, Beatrice Suttrop, Valentin Zachmann; Teaching team: Prof. Markus Allmann, Alba Balmaseda Domínguez, Prof. Dr. Martina Baum, Kyra Bullert, Špela Setzen, Prof. Markus Vogl; Experts on site: Pablo García Muñoz, Consuelo Martín-Moyano Blázquez, Fidel Bravo Sánchez, Maria Del Mar Bravo Delgado, Javier García Bravo, Rafael Domínguez Moreno and Julián Romero (shepherds); Jesús Fernández López y José Milara (Bioconstrucciones prefabricadas Brizna); Lisa Carignani (PhD candidate RomaTre University); Juan José Benítez Ruiz Moyano (Historian and Councillor of Environment of Cabeza del Buey); special thanks to Pastora and Jacinta, the donkeys who helped us.


This object is part of the TACK Exhibition “Unausgesprochenes Wissen / Unspoken Knowledge / Le (savoir) non-dit”, in the section “Codes and Communities”.