Venice Biennale 2014: Russia to Assemble Expo of Urban Ideas from Past Century

Apocalyptic panorama for “Ark-Stroy” booth, 2014, Evgeny Katin (Bang! Bang! Studio) / Courtesy — Strelka institute for media, architecture and design

True to the country’s experimental past, ’s participation for the 2014 Venice Architecture Biennale will expose the continued relevance of historical urban ideas by applying them as solutions for contemporary needs. Titled Fair Enough, the will be presented as an international trade show of ideas, a “marketplace of urban invention” that is both “made in Russia and open to the world.”

The full curatorial text, after the break…

Venice Biennale 2014: Portugal to Distribute “Homeland” Newspaper Based on Housing

Cover of “Homeland, News from

This year for the 2014 Venice Architecture Biennale, Portugal will be officially represented by newspaper. This choice in media corresponds to the possibility of framing worldviews by revelling events, culture traits and socio-economic challenges of a country.

Extensively distributed in three different editions, over the six month period of the Biennale, Homeland, News from Portugal intends to report news about current architectural, social and economic life in Portugal, reflecting on and informing about a variety of aspects of the modernization of the country over the past 100 years.

More from the curator, after the break…

Venice Biennale 2014: Minsuk Cho to Present “Crow’s Eye View” of Divided Korea

Kim Il-sung Square, Pyongyang, 2010 © Philipp Meuser

Minsuk Cho of MASS Studies, commissioner and curator of the Korean Pavilion at the 2014 Venice Architecture Biennale, has announced that he will be responding to director Rem Koolhaas’ theme Absorbing Modernity: 1914-2014 with an focused on the architecture of divided . With the exhibition Crow’s Eye View: The Korean Peninsula, Cho will present the architecture of North and South Korea as “an agent – a mechanism for generating alternative narratives that are capable of perceiving both the everyday and the monumental in new ways.”

The full curatorial statement, after the break…

Venice Biennale 2014: Slovenia to Explore the “Culturalization” of Space

Cultural Centre of European Space Technologies; Matija Bevk, Aljoša Dekleva, Tina Gregorič, Rok Oman, Vasa J. Perović, Jurij Sadar, Špela Videčnik, Boštjan Vuga, 2012, Photographer: Tomaž Maček. Image © KSEVT

Delving into the fundamentals of architecture by researching the work of Slovene engineer Herman Potočnik Noordung, the pioneer of space architecture, the Pavilion of at the 2014 Venice Architecture Biennale will explore concepts of “space culturalization.” Curated by the Cultural Centre of European Space Technologies (KSEVT), The Problem of Space Travel – Supre:Architecture will parallel solutions from Science and Technology with the Arts and Humanities as a means of envisioning contemporary options for appropriating space.

The curatorial statement and more information, after the break…

Venice Biennale 2014: Antarctica to be First Continent Represented

Halley VI Research Station / Hugh Broughton Architects. Image Courtesy of British Antarctic Survey

This year, as the first continent ever to be represented at the Venice Architecture Biennale, will bring together leading international architects and artists to explore present and future models of living in the South Polar region. The , Antarctopia will feature projects and ideas by participants, such as Hugh Broughton, Juergen Mayer H. and Zaha Hadid. 

The curatorial statement and complete list of participants, after the break…

Venice Biennale 2014: 100 Architects to Discuss “Time Space Existence”

studio sc, studio mk27 - marcio kogan + suzana glogowski + diana radomysler, shooting space, 2011

The Dutch non-profit Global Arts Affairs Foundation has summoned a diverse group of 100 architects from over 40 countries to participate in the Collateral Event “Time Space Existence” at the 2014 Venice Architecture Biennale

Ricardo Bofill, and Eduardo Souto De Moura are among the many participating, showcasing ideas, research and aspirations that will add commentary about the current state of architecture as well as highlight philosophical questions and concepts regarding time, space and existence. 

A complete list of participants, after the break…

Venice Biennale 2014: Montenegro to Present “Treasures in Disguise”

Spomen Dom. Image © Luka Bošković Photography

This year at the Venice Architecture Biennale, the Pavilion will present four neglected, late-modernist buildings that were originally constructed as a testament to a radiant new society. An effort to spark discourse about urban regeneration in and the future of the former Yugoslavia’s architecture, the seeks to illuminate the uncanny beauty of each structure as they are regarded to be Treasures in Disguise.

More from the curators and a preview of the highlighted buildings, after the break…

Venice Biennale 2014: Jimenez Lai to Construct Taiwanese “Township of Domestic Parts”

Family Portrait . Image © Township of Domestic Parts: Made in

Taiwan-born architect ’s proposal Township of Domestic Parts: Made in Taiwan has been selected to represent Taiwan in the 2014 Venice Architecture Biennale. Scattered throughout the Palazzo delle Prigioni, the installation will be comprised of nine small house, each with a single program, that will make up an “interior township of misfit parts.” 

Read on for the complete curatorial statement… 

Venice Biennale 2014: Danish Pavilion to Reintroduce the Power of Aesthetics

Frederiksberg Urban Spaces, photo by Ulrika Wahlmark (2009), Courtesy of SLA

What does butterflies, quantum mechanics, poetry and dirt have to do with architecture? In the Danish pavilion at the 2014 Venice Architecture Biennale, you are invited to sense, wonder, be curious and reflect when you meet the smell of dirt, read Niels Bohr’s letter to Einstein, hear the sound of poetry and burry your toes in pine needles. The pavilion reintroduces the forgotten power of aesthetics as the complementary to the rational. It argues that the two together form the foundation for our future decision making.

Venice Biennale 2014: “Anatomy of the Wallpaper” to Present Layered History of Cyprus’ Capital

© Michael Hadjistyllis, Stefanos Roimpas / Anatomy of the Wallpaper (2014)

has been shaped by a tumultuous history. Power struggles between invaders, conquerors and colonial powers have all left indelible marks on the landscape, much of which can be witnessed in the island’s capital of Nicosia. 

Uncovering this history, the curators of Cyprus’ fifth participation at the 2014 Venice Architecture Biennale will expose the island’s layered past and the story of Nicosia in allegory form with the Anatomy of the Wallpaper. 

Learn more and read Cyprus’ full curatorial statement, after the break…

Venice Biennale 2014: UAE Unearths “Structures of Memory”

National House - My father’s friend Ahmed Abdulla Al Jassasi, Al Shahama, 1980; Courtesy of Houreya Naser Musabah Khamis Al Kalbani

Within the rapidly changing landscape of the , much of the nation’s vernacular and modern architecture is being quickly replaced by “iconic” contemporary structures. Despite this, many of the ’s previous landscape remains a vivid memory within the minds and mementos of its people.

Thus, for the UAE’s 2014 participation at the Venice Architecture Biennale, Lest We Forget: Structures of Memory in the United Arab Emirates will bring to light seminal projects of the last century that expose the transmission of architectural traditions in a way that addresses the nation’s current cultural identity. 

Preservation of pre-oil vernacular architecture and a special focus on 1970s and 80s modern architecture will both serve as highlights of the exhibition. 

The UAE’s full curatorial statement, after the break…

Venice Biennale 2014: NRJA to Establish First-Ever Database of Latvian Post-War Modernist Architecture

Restaurant “Sēnīte” (1967); Vidzeme highway 37.km / Linards Skuja, Andris Bite, G. Grīnbergs, R. Ozoliņš – Courtesy of The Museum of Architecture of

The architects of NRJA have been chosen to curate Latvia’s participation at the 2014 Venice Architecture Biennale. Based on the assertion that “there is (no) modernism in Latvia,” the pavilion’s Unwritten will confront the lack of research and evaluation of Latvian post-war modernist architecture.

Venice Biennale 2014: The Evolution of Brazilian Architecture to be on Display

© Cristiano Mascaro

Chosen to curate the Brazilian contribution at the 2014 Venice Architecture Biennale, diplomat and architecture critic André Aranha Corrêa do Lago has revealed plans for an that will chronologically illustrate the evolution of Brazilian architecture.

180 projects will be exhibited, all of which have either played a significant role in the country’s architectural evolution, such as the pre-Colombian (Indian shacks), vernacular constructions and baroque designs, or have displayed a strong international influence, like the Capanema Palace, Pampulha and Brasília. In addition to this, 50 important personalities, including Lucio Costa, Oscar Niemeyer, Lina Bo Bardi, and Paulo Mendes da Rocha, will be highlighted for their assistance in spotlighting the importance of Brazilian architecture.

Venice Biennale 2014: Dutch Pavilion to Rethink the Open Society

Housing scheme Lekkumerend in Leeuwarden , 1962, collection Het Nieuwe Instituut, BROX_1337t339- 1, Van den Broek en Bakema Architects

This year for the 2014 Venice Architecture Biennale, the Dutch entry Open: A Bakema Celebration will reflect on the idea of an open society through the work and research of (1914-1981).

The Dutch architect, identified as a “compelling exponent of the Dutch welfare state,” was a leading voice within the international avant-garde movements CIAM (International Congresses of Modern Architecture) and Team 10. Inspired by the belief that “architecture should accommodate the emancipation of the masses while allowing for the self-realization of the individual citizen,” his portfolio includes some of the Netherlands’ most important postwar projects, such as the Rotterdam shopping street Lijnbaan.

Venice Biennale 2014: Japan Pavilion to Examine Radical Experiments of the 1970s

Pavilion Installation Image. Image © Keigo KOBAYASHI

The influence of Western civilization and the birth of modernization following World War II lead Japan to become the world’s second largest economy by 1968. With this came a host of problems, namely environmental pollution and the oil crisis, which triggered the reexamination of in Japanese architecture and a series of radical experiments by young architects that inevitably lead to a new vision of the city. 

Highlighting the work of these young architects, as well as historians, urban observers, artists and magazines of the 1970s, Japan’s participation at the 2014 Venice Architecture Biennale will spotlight the “independent, fundamentally innovative responses” that “unfolded a new fertile field of architecture” and revealed the “essential power” our profession has in the real world.

Sold! 100 Design Relics from Niemeyer, Le Corbusier, FLW and More

Alvar Aalto: Early cantilevered armchair with stepped base, model no. 31, designed for the Tuberculosis Sanatorium, Paimio, 1929-1933 (Sold for £23,750). Image Courtesy of Phillips

UPDATE: The has concluded and more than £5.6 million was made. Find out how much the famous, architect-designed relics went for after the break.

Next week, a rare collection of over 100 relics designed by some of architecture’s most significant practitioners from the last two centuries will be auctioned off at the Phillip’s in London. Ranging from a full-scale paper tea house by this year’s Pritzker laureate Shigeru Ban to the Peacock chair designed by Frank Lloyd Wright for Tokyo’s Imperial Hotel, the items being showcased and sold are an ode to the ideas in which have had a profound impact on our built environment.

An exhibition of the items, appropriately titled “The Architect,” is already underway, prior to the auction on April 29.

Works by Gerrit Rietveld, Le Corbusier and Oscar Niemeyer are all available for purchase. Read on for a preview of the highlighted items…

Grimshaw Architects Merge Architecture and Industrial Design at Milan Furniture Fair

The lobby of the Queens Museum in Flushing Meadows, New York. At this month’s , Grimshaw Architects collaborated on an exhibition with Poltrona Frau. The show included an augmented-reality app—first introduced on the cover of Metropolis in October 2012—that brings 2-D images to life. / © David Sundberg

Grimshaw Architects‘ dual focus on industrial and architectural design will be celebrated this month in a featured exhibit at Milan Fair. In this article, originally published by Metropolis under the title “Down to the Details,” author Ken Shulman presents the firm’s evolution in the context of the exhibit, touching on the projects being presented and more intriguingly — on how they are being presented.

Shortly after he joined Grimshaw Architects, Andrew Whalley was tasked with putting together an exhibition at the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) in London. Titled Product + Process, the 1988 show was decidedly counter-current—a parade of pragmatic, largely industrial structures Grimshaw realized in the UK in the face of surging postmodern fervor. Featured projects included the transparent building the then 15-person firm designed to house the Financial Times’ London printing facilities, and a flexible, easily reconfigurable factory Grimshaw built for Herman Miller in Bath. But it wasn’t the selection of projects that caught the public eye. “We asked our clients to take apart pieces of their buildings, and then rebuild them for the exhibition,” says Whalley, now deputy chairman of Grimshaw. “This wasn’t a typical show of architectural drawings and models.”

Venice Biennale 2014: Dominican Republic Seeks Funding for “La Feria Concreta” Documentary

Fair of Peace and Fraternity of the Free World, Santo Domingo, (1955). Image © Archivo General de la Nación

Laboratorio de Arquitectura Dominicana (LAD), curators of the Dominican Republic’s first-ever Venice Architecture Biennale participation, has launched a Kickstarter campaign to raise funds for a short documentary that will reveal the daily life of La Feria. Originally built by brutal dictator Rafael Trujillo as a symbol of power and wealth, the 1950s fairground has transformed into an “architectural protagonist” within the city of Santo Domingo that serves various government bodies by day and illicit enterprises by night.

If successful, award-winning filmmaker Corinne van der Borch will capture the historic center’s dualistic nature, revealing untold stories about La Feria’s turbulent past as well as explore how its architecture changed the city.

Learn more and support the film here on Kickstarter!