Dublin is one of the world’s most beloved cities. The Irish capital welcomes over 5.6 million tourists every year from around the world, seeking out the city’s red brick rows, cobblestone streets, and lush green parklands.
One of the few incontrovertible truths to emerge from the 16th International Architecture Exhibition, which opened in Venice on May 26 and runs through November 25, is that sensitivity and skill in making architecture do not necessarily transfer to the work of organizing an architecture exhibition.
As La Biennale prepares to open to the public this Saturday May 26, PLANE—SITE spoke to curators Yvonne Farrell and Shelley McNamara about this edition’s theme, Freespace. They move beyond architecture as an object, instead imagining Freespace as an invitation to think about architecture as a space of opportunities. Literally and metaphorically, Freespace presents environments of generosity, accessibility and freedom and celebrates the rich civic experiences that they create.
https://www.archdaily.com/895066/curators-yvonne-farrell-and-shelley-mcnamara-provide-insight-into-the-theme-of-the-2018-venice-biennaleAD Editorial Team
The jury will be responsible for awarding the Golden Lion for Best National Participation, the Golden Lion for Best Participant in the International ExhibitionFREESPACE, and the Silver Lion for a Promising Young Participant in the International ExhibitionFREESPACE. They will also have the opportunity to award one special mention to National Participations and two special mentions to the participants in the International Exhibition.
https://www.archdaily.com/894353/jury-members-for-the-2018-venice-biennale-announcedNiall Patrick Walsh
At a press conference earlier today, curators of the 2018 Venice Biennale Yvonne Farrell and Shelley McNamara of Grafton Architects revealed more information about this year's upcoming event, to be hosted from May 26th to November 25th. Building on the thematic concept the duo presented last June—“Freespace”—the event will feature a main exhibition in the Central Pavilion of the Giardini and the Arsenale featuring work by 71 participants, while two Special Sections will feature a total of 29 further participants. Elsewhere, 65 national pavilions will present contributions from around the world, including 7 first-time participants: Antigua & Barbuda, Saudi Arabia, Guatemala, Lebanon, Mongolia, Pakistan and the Holy See.
We believe that everyone has the right to benefit from architecture. The role of architecture is to give shelter to our bodies, but also to lift our spirits. A beautiful wall forming a street edge gives pleasure to the passer-by, even if they never go inside.
Freespace will "reveal diversity, specificity, and continuity in architecture. Together," they proposed, "we can reveal the capacity of architecture to connect with history, time, place, and people. These qualities sustain the fundamental capacity of architecture to nurture and support a meaningful impact between people and place." In their closing statement, Farrell and McNamara chose to quote an Ancient Greek proverb: a society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they know they will never sit in.
https://www.archdaily.com/873126/grafton-architects-yvonne-farrell-shelley-mcnamara-2018-venice-venezia-architecture-biennale-free-spaceAD Editorial Team
GSAPP Conversationsis a podcast series designed to offer a window onto the expanding field of contemporary architectural practice. Each episode pivots around discussions on current projects, research, and obsessions of a diverse group of invited guests at Columbia, from both emerging and well-established practices. Usually hosted by the Dean of the GSAPP, Amale Andraos, the conversations also feature the school’s influential faculty and alumni and give students the opportunity to engage architects on issues of concern to the next generation.
https://www.archdaily.com/806013/introducing-columbia-gsapp-conversations-inaugural-architecture-podcast-exhibition-models-james-taylor-fosterAD Editorial Team
Farrell and McNamara established Grafton Architects in 1978. They have held the Kenzo Tange Chair at Harvard GSD and the Louis Kahn Chair at Yale University. The pair has also been invited as visiting teachers at EPFL in Lausanne and the Accademia d'Archittettura, in Mendrisio, where they were appointed as teachers in 2013, in addition to visiting several other universities worldwide for lectures and crits.
Farrell and McNamara, who together lead a team of twenty-five as Grafton Architects, are both powerful thinkers, considered conversationalists and unobtrusively groundbreaking designers. For a practice so compact, their international portfolio is exceptionally broad. The first phase of the UTEC in the Peruvian capital, which began following an international competition in 2011, represents the farthest territory the practice have geographically occupied. The project is, in their words, a “man-made cliff” between the Pacific and the mountains – on one side a cascading garden, and on the other a “shoulder” to the city cast from bare concrete.
In a meeting yesterday, The Board of La Biennale di Venezia appointed Yvonne Farrell and Shelley McNamara of Grafton Architects as curators of the 16th International Architecture Exhibition in 2018. This marks the second time that the Venice Architecture Biennale will be directed by women, after Kazuyo Sejima's role as director for the 2010 Biennale.
Cities across the world are full of white elephants – something which ArchDaily has recently explored. In the latest episode of Section D, Monocle 24's weekly review of design, architecture and craft, the team examine similar cases from the unfinished Palestinian Parliament to redundant projects in Belgrade. This edition also looks at the RIBA's new International Prize, which was awarded this year to Grafton Architects for their University of Engineering and Technology building in Lima.
The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) has announced the shortlist of six finalist projects in the running for the inaugural RIBA International Prize. The first RIBA Award open to any qualified architect in the world, the International Prize seeks to name the world’s “most significant and inspirational” building. Criteria for consideration include the demonstration of “visionary, innovative thinking and excellence of execution, whilst making a distinct contribution to its users and to its physical context.”
The six finalists were named from a longlist of 30 buildings, from which a further selection of 21 projects have been recognized by the jury for the RIBA Award for International Excellence. The jury has also named the winner of the RIBA International Emerging Architect prize recognizing “the achievement of architects in the earlier stages of their career who are working on global projects.”
"Our panel of jurors have been particularly impressed by the way in which each building reacts to, resolves and assimilates into the varying geographies and contexts - from dense urban cities to a small town in the Arctic Circle," said RIBA President Jane Duncan on the naming of the finalists. "Each project resolves the complex demands of its context with ingenuity, exceptional detail and finishing and a sensitivity to the needs of the users and communities which will inhabit these spaces."
Dublin-based Grafton Architects, who last year were awarded the Jane Drew Prize, have seen off competition from the likes of Herzog & de Meuron and David Chipperfield Architects to win the contest to design the London School of Economics’ (LSE) £100 million ($144 million) Paul Marshall Building. The new center will house the academic departments of Accounting, Finance and Management and research centres, including the Marshall Institute, with teaching facilities as well as new multipurpose sports and arts facilities. Grafton Architects are reportedly "absolutely delighted to be given this opportunity to build in this unique location in Lincoln's Inn Fields, across from the wonderful Sir John Soane’s Museum, for a visionary client such as LSE."
“The amount of analysis and intellectual effort that has gone into the designs from each team is staggering and the results are impressive and very exciting. Given its size and prime location on Lincoln’s Inn Fields we want this to be a seminal university building; its legacy will endure for many generations so it is vital that we make the right decision,” said Julian Robinson, LSE’s Director of Estates.
All six schemes are being publicly exhibited at the LSE's Saw Swee Hock Student Centre through March 17. Read on for a glimpse of each.