Following an international competition, AMDL CIRCLE has been selected to create the pavilion which will represent the spirit and vision of the Nordic Countries at the Expo Osaka in 2025. Their proposal takes a sustainable and circular approach, as the structure is purposely designed for disassembly and reuse. Technically developed and engineered by Rimond and conceived by AMDL CIRCLE, the pavilion aims to showcase the Nordic people’s respect and connection with the environment while offering ample space for the display of technological innovations.
Reuse: The Latest Architecture and News
In light of the looming climate crisis and the pursuit of sustainability, the concepts of revival and reuse have emerged as crucial strategies in the quest for decarbonization in the architecture industry. These principles preach that creating new structures may be sustainable but encourage architects to minimize their ecological footprint by reactivating and recycling existing resources. This year specifically, innovative projects in line with these themes were displayed as part of the 18th International Architecture Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia. This world-renowned event’s core purpose is to serve as a platform for architects, designers, and thinkers to collectively reimagine sustainability, decarbonization, resource conservation, and the industry's future.
Parabase Reuses Prefabricated Concrete Elements for a Radical Housing Development in Basel, Switzerland
Architectural studio Parabase has been chosen for the development of several plots of Areal Walkeweg in Basel for the purpose of creating affordable apartments and an integrated migration center. The design solution, titled “Elementa,” reuses components from deconstructed cantonal properties, transforming the former columns and floor plates into walls and façade elements. The project was chosen following an open competition, where the international jury favored Parabase’s solution for its strong aesthetics combined with the creative reuse of prefabricated concrete elements.
Women-Led Architecture Practices: Redefining Urban Housing Design at the Time Space Existence Exhibition in Venice
As part of the 6th edition of “Time Space Existence”, the European Cultural Center (ECC) presented the “Reconceptualizing Urban Housing” exhibition. Taking place from May 20 to November 26, 2023, it brings together a diverse array of women-led architecture practices from around the world, each offering a unique perspective on collective housing, particularly within urban settings. The showcased projects feature approaches from Europe, North America, and more developing countries like Uganda, Malaysia, and Mexico.
Two years ago, on September 18, 2021, Christo and Jeanne-Claude's L'Arc de Triomphe, Wrapped, 1961–2021, was inaugurated. The monumental public artwork wrapped the Parisian monument in over 25,000 square meters of silvery fabric tied in place with 7,000 meters of red rope. The materials, all made out of woven polypropylene, a type of thermoplastic, are now being reused, upcycled, and recycled, following the artists’ vision. Most of the materials will be transformed to serve practical uses for future public events in Paris. The Christo and Jeanne-Claude Foundation is also collaborating with Gagosian to bring Christo’s early works to London’s East End for an exhibition open from October 6-22, 2023.
The role and relationship of furniture in architecture and space design are of great relevance. Designers such as Eileen Gray, Alvar Aalto, Mies Van der Rohe, and Verner Panton conceived furniture —primarily stools and chairs— that endure over time as powerful and timeless elements, with a determining impact on the interior atmosphere. Thus, the relationship between furniture and space becomes a constant dialogue in which design, aesthetics, and materials contribute their dimension.
Today, furniture should not be limited solely to fulfilling an aesthetic and functional role, but should also have a purpose in the context of contemporary design and sustainable development. It is essential to reflect on and question the processes and choice of materials in the manufacturing of these elements, in addition to the value they bring to interior spaces. In this context, HEWI has taken a step forward by creating the Re-seat family, consisting of stools and chairs made from post-industrial recycled materials (PIR), sourced in part from the processes of the company itself and a regional supplier, both based in Bad Arolsen, Germany. It also features integrated solutions with universal design in mind, making a statement in favor of innovation and eco-design.
Rethinking the Biennale: In Conversation with Anh-Linh Ngo, Curator of the German Pavilion at the 2023 Venice Biennale
The German Pavilion Open for Maintenance / Wegen Umbau geöffnet at this years 18th International Architecture Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia was curated by ARCH+ and Summacumfemmer Büro Juliane Greb. At its core, the exhibition addresses the resource problem and the material cycles of the biennale. Inside the pavilion is a functioning workshop dedicated to applying these concepts of care, repair, and maintenance to Venice onsite. In Venice, ArchDaily had the chance to speak with the co-curator Anh-Linh Ngo, where he discussed the different aspects of the German Pavilion.
Kengo Kuma uses materials to connect with the local context and the users of his projects. The textures and elementary forms of constructive systems, materials, and products, are exhibited and used in favor of the architectural concept, giving value to the functions that will be carried out in each building.
From showcases made with ceramic tiles to the sifted light created by expanded metal panels, passing through an ethereal polyester coating, Kuma understands the material as an essential component that can make a difference in architecture from the design stages. Next, we present 21 projects where Kengo Kuma masterfully uses construction materials.
GXN and MEE Studio’s Pavilions in Copenhagen Explore Circularity and Regeneration for the 2023 UIA Congress of Architects
Developed by GXN for the 2023 UIA World Congress of Architects in Copenhagen, The (P)RECAST Pavilion explores the possibility of reusing precast concrete elements from existing buildings to promote circularity and reduced carbon emissions in the construction industry. The pavilion showcases salvaged concrete elements alongside 200-year-old timber beams, highlighting their aesthetic and structural value. Following the same motivation but through a different approach, MEE Studio has developed The Regenerative Cabin. Located in Copenhagen, the structure explores the applied use of regenerative biogenic materials to reduce the carbon emissions associated with the building materials.
10 Structural Installations by Snøhetta, MADWORKSHOP, and others at the ECC's 'Time Space Existence' Exhibition at Venice
In parallel to this year's Venice Architecture Biennale, The European Cultural Centre (ECC) presented the sixth edition of its extensive architecture exhibition titled Time Space Existence. The 2023 iteration of the group show draws attention to expressions of sustainability in its numerous forms, ranging from a focus on the environment and urban landscape to the unfolding conversations on innovation, reuse, community, and inclusion. A total of 217 projects by established participants like Snøhetta or MADWORKSHOP and emerging players such as Urban Radicals or ACTA are currently on show through the 26th of November, 2023, at Venice's Palazzo Bembo, Palazzo Mora, and Marinaressa Gardens.
In response to climate change, the installations on show investigate new technologies and construction methods that reduce energy consumption through circular design and develop innovative, organic, and recycled building materials. Participants also address social justice by presenting living solutions envisioned for displaced communities and minorities, while others examine the tensions between the built urban environment and the nature surrounding it to identify opportunities for coexistence.
Subscriptions are quickly becoming an integral part of everyday life. For example, streaming platforms have completely replaced the need to own video cassettes, while ride-sharing services partially cover the need to own a private car. Subscriptions have been largely understood as digital services, but a new trend suggests that the same concept could be transferred to physical objects in the near future. Instead of owning a fridge, a washing machine, or even light bulbs, one could acquire a subscription to ensure the freshness of produce, clean clothes, and a well-lit home.
The concept is known as the “subscription-based economy,” a variant of the “circular economy” notion. It postulates that instead of owning some of the objects used every day, one could subscribe to a service to gain access to the same benefits, but without the need to own, maintain or dispose of the object in question. Consumers no longer buy products; they buy access to services. Sometimes, it would mean simply leasing the object instead of purchasing it, but the model goes one step further. It inscribes a shift of responsibility and mentality. Because consumers no longer own the objects, the responsibility to reuse and recycle falls to the producers, who are now in charge of the entire life cycle of the objects they create.
Refurbishment and adaptive reuse have been at the forefront of architectural discourse in recent years. This demonstrates that the profession is becoming increasingly aware of its impact on the environment and the opportunities presented by reusing what has already been built. Architecture 2030 has recently launched CARE, or Carbon Avoided Retrofit Estimator, a new digital tool that enables designers, owners, and communities to quantify the carbon benefits of adaptive reuse. By entering a streamlined set of project information, such as energy targets and potential building interventions, users can quickly estimate both operational carbon emissions generated by the use of the building and embodied carbon emissions, which are tied to the building materials employed.
Reports show that authorities have begun dismantling Stadium 974 after it hosted seven matches during FIFA World Cup, with six group games and one Round of 16 knockout matches. It was also the only stadium built for the World Cup without air conditioning, so it only hosted evening matches. According to the BBC, construction workers moved on the site on 9 December to “take the stadium out of tournament mode.” The structure was designed to be the first FIFA-compliant stadium that can be fully dismantled and re-purposed after the tournament ends. While Qatar called this a “beacon of sustainability,” experts warn that the real sustainability of the scheme depends on several factors, including when and where the stadium will be reused.
Interior architects and designers have often claimed that a well-designed office space will translate into greater productivity, creativity and worker satisfaction –yet the impact is greater than most tend to imagine. Recent studies suggest that good design positively impacts company culture, fosters a sense of community and creates a healthy, happy and motivating environment. In fact, it directly influences the recruitment and retention of talent: “workplace design significantly increases the attractiveness of employers to potential candidates.” Proper lighting, a flexible layout and biophilic features are all important factors to consider during the planning stage. But to fully address user comfort and well-being, these must be combined with excellent furniture design. After all, integrating high-quality ergonomic pieces is a simple way to boost mood and enhance functionality and aesthetics when creating or redecorating the workspace.
With the scarcity of open spaces, the high concentration of empty buildings in areas already consolidated in cities, and an awareness of the impact of new constructions on the environment, refurbishments are increasingly part of both the architect's work routine and the client's choice. At the same time, they are often synonymous with unexpected surprises and problems, causing delays and discomfort. This text presents four pre-work strategies that can help you better prepare for this moment.
Reinvention is one of the founding myths of the United States of America. For those lucky enough to come here on the decks of ships rather than chained in the hold, this country offered a chance to be someone else, somewhere else. For them and generations of immigrants who followed, America seemed to put a safe distance between their pasts and a boundless future.
But the illusion was eventually flipped on its head. Around the turn of the millennium, reinvention was a prevailing theme for movie characters intent on getting out of small-town America; in architecture, that sentiment took the form of building dream cities anywhere but here. In Dubai and Shanghai our brightest design minds conjured up hermetically sealed towers, malls, and museums largely disconnected from history, community, and climate.