Who We Are: Our Crew

The Global C.O.B

The Global C.O.B. Team (Community of Biobuilders) consists of trained cob builders of all nationalities, ages, specialties and in all areas of the world, ready to teach a workshop or lead a project…all in support of more earthen construction replacing concrete on the Planet and increasing awareness and experience of natural building everywhere, especially in the non-Western countries where the awareness and need is greater for well-built earthen housing.

Please refer to our For Students pages to learn how you can proceed on the journey to becoming a Cob Workshop assistant, teacher, intern and builder with CruzinCobGlobal.

Here is our international team of teachers….we look forward to having you join us soon!

 

CLAUDINE “COB QUEEN” DÉSIRÉE

MASTER COBBER/COB INSTRUCTOR

 

Born and raised on the 22nd floor of a skyscraper in NYC to two Jewish immigrants, I carried my Manhattan/European roots with me to California and beyond. I studied Geography, International Relations/Development and International Environmental Policy in the academic world in California, France, and Switzerland before and while raising Viva, Joia and Xica, my three stellar sons, currently established all over the U.S. honing their journeys and all cob lovers of course!!!! My academic pursuits soon gave way to the obligatory West Coast Yoga/Meditation/Massage path and thus the work of a Spiritually Awakened life was initiated. My academic interests were also complemented with hands-on learning in every aspect of Sustainable Living skills, which I then put into action on my 5000 square foot homestead in downtown Santa Cruz near the beach with cob buildings, permaculture, a compost DSCN6010toilet, chickens, fruit trees and the lowest utility bill in SC! When my youngest son turned 18 in 2014, and I turned 50, my next Dream was manifested with the sale of my Mini-Urban Ecovillage in Santa Cruz to fuel a solo Global Ecovillage and Cob Teaching Bike Tour for the next five years through 15 countries in Africa, South America, the US and Europe, in which I taught over 30 workshops, most of them 4-5-week full builds.

In January of 2019 I bought 5 hectares in the Alentejo region of Portugal, planning on manifesting a Cob Ecovillage there.  However the isolation and dependence on a vehicle, as well as the extreme winter/summer climates and drought conditions led me back to the Azores Islands that had caught my Heart the first time I stepped out of the plane and smelled/felt the air.  I had been brought to the Azores by an astrocartography reading in which my Venus and Neptune lines were strongly activated there.  My Neptune line runs right through São Miguel and pretty much right through the Quinta da Vida Beleza Ecovillage Farm

Sunrise

that I created from scratch from January 2020 until now, in 2023, with the help of my workshop students, teachers and my sons.  It is the present culmination of my 20+ years of Cob Life!  It is a fearlessly manifested Vision.  It is my comfort as I wake up every morning on the 2nd floor of my Cob Home and look out at the Atlantic Ocean to see if it looks good for an early morning swim.  The Azorean moist pleasant breezes that are always a perfect temperature wrap me in LOVE, nurturing my Soul and Spirit every day.  The village I envisioned has, in the last 3 years, become a reality, and now enjoyable by campers, guests, volunteers, family, friends, students, cats, chickens and many other living beings.  This summer it came alive online when I posted it on GoogleMaps and ended up fully and happily overwhelmed with demand from visitors from so many countries.  People loved it!

Our most recent additions are a magnificent 2-story personal Compost Toilet with ocean view and an Outdoor Rocket Stove Kitchen.  My unending love of travel, speaking in other languages and cultural immersion will always continue and I envision having beautiful cob houses to come to in all of my favorite places, which I am continuing to discover. I am so grateful for the strong support of the Universe confirming this path every day.

DSC_0566Learning to build cob houses has been an unexpected gift in so many ways.  The joy I see on people’s faces at my workshops when they roll up their pants for the first time and stick their toes in the cool soft mud, the laughter and heart-to-heart conversations ignited while mixing and building with a partner, the meditative concentration of working on a sculpture, the satisfaction of stepping back and seeing your beautiful trimmed wall section, the excitement at embedding bottles and sculpting an art window, the bliss of relaxing with good food and a cold beer after a full day’s building in community, and the gratitude of leaving confident in starting a dream project….are why I do this work.  Over and over again, all over the world, cob building creates childlike joy, love, community, and empowerment.  It has shown itself to be much more than a building technique.  It is a remedy for a better Life on Earth.  It creates Happy People living in Happy Houses. May the legacy of CruzinCobGlobal continue to heal the World one workshop at a time and one cob house at a time. Aho.

 

VIVA HANSEN

COB INSTRUCTOR/MASTER COBBER

 

DSC_0012 (2)As a kid Cob was this weird, empowering thing my mom did to build us a bigger home. I participated when I wanted, and skipped out when I didn’t. Though as time went on the Cob effect was undeniable. Every time a build was underway there was music and laughter and food and wisdom from people of all ages and backgrounds.
As I matured through my high school years I was able to involve myself with enough earthen building to feel its practical magic. Then one IMG_9293summer I created an opportunity to build a meditation room with my high school physics teacher. His passionate involvement with our Indigenous community transformed the project into a spiritual experience. Throughout the summer we made long trips to sacred rivers and hand-picked beautiful stones for the foundation, often walking for miles on a trail with three or four stones in a backpack. Then as I finished my college experience and returned to California, the opportunity to join my mother on her journey bloomed.
For me, Cob is primarily a physical experience. It has always been about sweat and breath. The feel of different dirts and sands, straws and rocks. And it is a mystical experience, bringing me back to the earth. But what I have learned from the last year is that Cob building can be a tool to sew communities back together. To bring “strangers” into a common space and make them family. In that vein, Cob really is a product of my life philosophy. Something that I can stand behind fully because I know that from top to bottom it is peace, hard work, sustainable and love.
As I continue to learn in this life I will continue to share what Cob has shared with me.

 

KRYSTAL ALEXANDER

COB INSTRUCTOR/COB BUILDER

Born and raised in the Midwest of the United States, Krystal has always been drawn to a life of community and connectivity with the land. Working as a Licensed Massage Therapist and Sound Healer for years she was looking to take the next step onto the path of healing and community living. She first began her journey into the life of building with natural materials in the summer of 2017 and hasn’t looked back. Since the first workshop with CruzinCobGlobal she has helped build a cob sauna, cob studio and 4 cob pizza ovens! Fueled by the passion to help spread awareness of the energy involved in everything we consume and create and to become more connected to our roots to minimize the footprints we leave behind. She believes through this hands on work we can unlock our souls creativity to spread what is true to us all with the world around. Krystal is more than willing to share the gifts of healing modalities with all who are interested.

 

PAULA CARNEIRO (Moçabarro, Brazil)

COB INSTRUCTOR/COB BUILDER

 

always smiling!

I was born in Campo Grande, raised in Curitiba and Salvador, and now I live in the countryside in the mountains of Mantiqueira, Minas Gerais, Brasil, where I’m eco building my own house. I’m also a professional dancer, graduated from Bahia Federal University in 2012, and have worked with performing and visual arts, cinema and cultural centre management. Meeting Claudine and cob building in 2018 simply transformed my life. I started a natural building business after my first advanced cob workshop with CruzinCobGlobal in Guatapé, Colombia. I continued learning with a full build workshop in Colorado, later that year. In the beginning of 2019, I joined with Naiana Maximo and Priscila Bogéa to create the first female eco-building collective in Brazil called Moçabarro (Clay Gals is a translation we love!). We began teaching cob workshops and expanded to other natural building techniques and finishings. In our very first year of work we had the opportunity to build a full 100m2 house (@terra.333) using a variety of earthen building processes in this very successful project. Since then we have been working collectively on eco-refurbishing, rocket stoves, cob ovens, cob furnishings, tadelakt, plastering and other finishings. We have also taught short-length workshops at my building site as well as for other hosts in Brasil. Cob building is now a way I find to express gestures and print them on earth. Here is the link to our successful all-women cob business: www.mocabarro.com.br
@mocabarro on Instagram and Facebook

 

 

CHRISTIAN EDER

COB ASSISTANT/COB BUILDER

Introducing Christian

Since I saw my first Cob Building in California I fell immediately in love with these earthen buildings. A few years later I finally got the opportunity to attend a cob workshop in the summer of 2023 on the beautiful island of São Miguel in the Azores, taught by Nicolas Pimentel.

I immediately felt drawn to building naturally without making a huge impact on nature.
I am so fascinated with building, not only the construction side itself, but the community aspect as well. To create something with like-minded people felt right and was fulfilling and fun. Thus I also attended an oven workshop and went on to build a compost toilet as a return student at Quinta da Vida Beleza, Claudine’s Ecovillage Farm in the Azores.

Floor-focused in the Azores

I grew up in the German-speaking area of the Alps in Northern Italy, surrounded by mountains and beautiful forests, lakes etc. From a young age nature and sustainability were part of my values, and that is why this particular style of building makes a lot of sense to me.

I really appreciate the intuitive approach to cobbing and its bioavailability. After my return home from the workshops, I was happy to randomly find several colorful clay sources in my area while hiking.

The joy of the reciprocal roof

After high school and working for some time, I went traveling around the world following my passions like climbing and hiking.  I took occasional employment and studied Eastern philosophy, in particular meditation and yoga in India.

I love languages and learned German and Italian at home, then English, Spanish, some French and am currently working on Portuguese.  I love to get to know people, cultures and cuisine from around the world. In essence, I love the diversity of our planet and getting to know it first hand.

 

 

 

 

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