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 modernism 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.
As described by the curators, the exhibition In the Real World will present visitors with “a variety of artifacts documenting the architects’ challenges, their own field surveys all over the world, and the crude discoveries historians made about the architecture in the city.” The pavilion will be a “warehouse containing 100 years” which “tells the story of the individuals who carved out their own paths in modernization.”
The Japanese Pavilion, commissioned by Kayoko Ota and organized by The Japan Foundation, will open its doors to the public Friday, June 6 at the Giardini. It will remain on view through November 23, spanning the duration of the Biennale.