MVRDV presents “Welcome to the Vertical Village” in Seoul

  • 06 Jul 2012
  • Events Urban Design
© mvrdvpr
“Welcome to the Vertical Village” is a new exhibition now open until October 7th at Total Museum of Contemporary Art in Korea.  The show is orchestrated by MVRDV and The Why Factory and is on its second run since opening in Taipei.  Each city has experience a different design of the exhibit, which allows visitors to walk through a giant model of a possible Vertical Village and experience the spatial richness and three dimensionality.  The exhibit explores “a city under rapid transformation” and the alternative to the “block attack” to find the ideal built environment.  The show features films, outdoor sculpture and a giant vertical village composed of more than 700 objects.
More on the exhibition after the break.
© mvrdvpr

MVRDV, and JUT Foundation for Arts and Architecture were invited by Total Museum of Contemporary Art (TMCA) in Seoul because of the relevance of the project to the rapid development of cities in East Asia.  A pressure to urbanize, coupled with the need to create dense urban environments, has turned many cities in East Asia into hyper-urbanized metropolises of block and slab buildings with repetitive apartment blocks.  This “Block Attack” replaces historic and vital elements of the urban environment: the traditional low rise, small scale, light types of architecture.

© mvrdvpr

The block architecture, which is cheap and easy to build, replaces the vital elements and communities formed by the traditional homes.  These new buildings replace highly social and connected communities, that had diverse interests reflected in the architecture of their homes.  These community cultures, when replaced with monotonous block buildings with identical units inspired by the Western standard of living, experience a sense of alienation between a new lifestyle and their own ways of living.

© mvrdvpr

The “Vertical Village” explores an alternative to these blocks and places visitors into a space where they can imagine a new model for their cities while still addressing density and the preservation of traditional village life.  This inspiration is not exclusive to East Asian cities, but is also applicable to Western cities that have fallen into the same cycle.

© mvrdvpr

Is there an alternative to this process? Can one imagine a new model for the development of East Asian cities? Can these areas be densified in such a way that the qualities of the traditional village are preserved? The Vertical Village is proposed as an contemporary alternative– a three-dimensional community that brings personal freedom, diversity, flexibility and neighbourhood life back into East Asian – and maybe even Western – cities.

Images via Flickr User MVRDV. All Rights Reserved.

Cite: "MVRDV presents “Welcome to the Vertical Village” in Seoul" 06 Jul 2012. ArchDaily. Accessed 22 May 2015. <>
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  • mijmij

    this is wt?f… thank you so much for “generating” problems/questions that is so well-known in any part of the world, yet if you dare to tell me this sort of clustering means an solution towards these issues?? this is so generic and superficial, not even worth to be mentioned at ArchDaily man