As part of ArchDaily's coverage of the 2016 Venice Biennale, we are presenting a series of articles written by the curators of the exhibitions and installations on show.
Architecture from Ireland
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Losing Myself, a collaborative exhibition by Níall McLaughlin and Yeoryia Manolopoulou, will be presented at the Ireland Pavilion at the 2016 Venice Architecture Biennale. Focusing on Alzheimer's Disease, the exhibition highlights the process of “designing and revisiting buildings for people who have dementia.” The exhibit contains two main components: a website that arranges a series of drawings, stories, and research on dementia; and an installation in the pavilion, which contains drawings that explore a building designed for people with dementia.
At the dawn of the age of transatlantic commercial aviation, Shannon, a small town on the west coast of Ireland, was thrust into the spotlight. By 1959 it had been developed as the world’s first Free Trade Zone and New Town, providing a new—and persistent—business model for US multinationals seeking cheaper ways to operate in Europe. On the other side of the world, China was beginning to develop its urbanisation policy and was interested in how Shannon had successfully decentralised its administration from Dublin. After many visits in the early 1980s by Chinese leaders to study this model, under the direction of Deng Xiaoping, the Shannon planning system was used as a template in the formation of Shenzhen and has since been rolled across China.
Níall McLaughlin Architects, based between the United Kingdom and Ireland, have been selected to represent Ireland at the 2016 Venice Biennale. The practice, who were shortlisted this year for the RIBA Stirling Prize, will be working alongside Yeoryia Manolopoulo, an architectural academic based in London. Their proposal "reflects their interest in working as architects to understand and improve the quality of life for those suffering from Alzheimer’s disease [by examining] the spatial experiences of people with Alzheimer’s whilst recognising that the experiences of the sufferer are unlikely to resemble any conventional architectural representation."
Belfast-based Hall McKnight are set to open a pop-up pavilion in London's King's Cross as part of the 2015 London Festival of Architecture. Located in Cubitt Square, the project forms part of the New Horizon’s initiative, supported by the Irish Architecture Foundation and ID15 (the year of Irish Design 2015). The structure, built from a collection of cut boards, "explores how the phenomenon of the city is assembled from individual pieces." The interior spaces will feature an installation of bricks reclaimed from a street of row houses in Belfast.
Yong ho Shin and John Randle of shindesignworks have been announced as the winners of "The Lake Isle of Innisfree," a design competition held earlier this year as part of the Yeats2015 festival. Based in London and Daegu, South Korea, the pair of architects proposed "Square Moon," a light-based installation for the Irish Island about which Yeats wrote his eponymous1892 poem, and from which the competition took its name.
When Sheila O'Donnell and John Tuomey, who practice in partnership as O'Donnell + Tuomey, were named as this year's recipients of the RIBA Royal Gold Medal, a palpable collective satisfaction appeared to spread throughout the profession. No one could find criticism in Joseph Rykwert and Níall McLaughlin's nomination, nor the ultimate choice of the RIBA Honours Committee, to bestow the award upon the Irish team. Their astonishingly rigourous body of work, compiled and constructed over the last twenty five years, has an appeal which extends beyond Irish and British shores. A robust stock of cultural, community and educational projects, alongside family homes and social housing projects, leaves little doubt about the quality, depth and breadth of their mutual capabilities and the skill of those that they choose to collaborate with.
Dublin-based Newenham Mulligan and London-based Grimshaw have been selected by the Royal Dublin Society and Leinster Rugby to redevelop the rugby team’s home arena in Ballsbridge, Ireland. The €20 million redevelopment, announced just before Ireland’s bid to host the 2023 Rugby World Cup, plans to replace the RDS Arena’s old Anglesea stand with one that increases the venue’s capacity to 25,000.
Irish Competition Searches for Conceptual Interpretations of WB Yeats Poem: "The Lake Isle of Innisfree"
In collaboration with The Model, Hazelwood Demesne Ltd, and Sligo City Council, the Institute of Technology Sligo has launched "The Lake Isle of Innisfree," an international architecture competition inspired by Yeats' eponymous poem of 1892. Part of Yeats2015, the competition prompts practitioners to propose an intervention for the Irish island of Innisfree, combining "Yeats' poetic vision and contemporary architectural ideas." Work may be submitted individually or as part of a team, and must be received by March 12. The winning design will be constructed on the island before June 13, in time for what would have been Yeats' 150th birthday. See more information about the competition and download the project brief here.
University College Cork has selected O'Donnell + Tuomey to design the university's new student hub, which will house learning, student support and administration spaces in a new building adjacent to the campus' Victorian Windle Medical Building, to the West of the main quadrangle. Selected for their ability to work within and around the historic buildings, the project will also see O'Donnell + Tuomey restore the medical building.
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