Natalia Solano-Meza is an architect, lecturer and researcher. She is an associate professor teaching at the School of Architecture, the Master in Architecture, and the Master in Arts Programs of the University of Costa Rica.

RESEARCH: Her work explores the relationships between transnational architecture and global powers in colonial/postcolonial contexts.  She has written extensively about architectural education in the Global South, the Tropics, climatic adaptation, agricultural landscapes, imperialism, and corporate architecture. Her works have been published in Argentina, Colombia, France, Mexico, Portugal, the United Kingdom and the United States.

SERVICE ROLES: Natalia chairs the Teaching and Curriculum Review Committees at the School of Architecture of the University of Costa Rica. Her work includes strategic planning, reviewing course structure, hosting academic activities, and researching teaching methods for the design professions. Currently, the Committee is working on completely transforming the architecture course. Between 2019 to 2022, she was in charge of the Theories and Histories Section at the School. In 2021, she conducted and co-authored the creation of the Commemorative Chair Ofelia Sanou Alfaro, an effort to consolidate architectural histories as a field of study within the University of Costa Rica. She loves swimming, running, labrador retrievers (one in particular), coffee, avocados, and tortilla chips.

Ongoing research:

The United Fruit Company Spaces in the Caribbean Region of Costa Rica between 1890 and 1930: Railroad Infrastructure, Agricultural Enclaves, and Architectural Forms is an interdisciplinary project informed by notions of pollution, toxicity, and environmental degradation focused on the architecture produced by the United Fruit Company. The project was awarded special funding from the Vice-rectory of the University of Costa Rica.

Forthcoming texts:

“Contaminated forms: agricultural landscapes, infrastructure, and spatial configuration in Costa Rican banana spaces.” Aggregate Architectural History Collaborative.

“Railroads and banana enclaves in Costa Rica: corporate power and transnational architecture,” in Current Collective in Architectural History and Environment.

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