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Six design teams selected for the Architecture Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia

19 december 2019

Het Nieuwe Instituut and the Creative Industries Fund NL announce the six design teams selected from their open call for the 17th International Architecture Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia. The open calls aim to promote knowledge and contribute to the development of research in the fields of architecture and urbanism. La Biennale takes place from 23 May to 29 November 2020.

The Dutch pavilion - Who is we?
The Netherlands' official contribution to La Biennale is commissioned by Het Nieuwe Instituut and surrounds the theme 'multispecies urbanism'. In response to chief curator Hashim Sarkis' question, 'How will we live together?', Het Nieuwe Instituut asks in return, 'Who is We?'. Architect/researcher Afaina de Jong and artist/researcher Debra Solomon explore a new urbanism where the starting point of design is the multiplicity and influence of both humans and non-humans, from animals and plants, to soil life and artificial cognitive systems.

In October 2019, Het Nieuwe Instituut and the Creative Industries Fund NL launched an open call for contributions to the public parallel programme of the Dutch pavilion that responded to the theme multispecies urbanism. This programme takes place before, during, and after La Biennale, both in Venice and elsewhere.

selection for the public parallel programme of the Dutch pavilion 2020

Failed Architecture with Stories on Earth. Stories on Earth is an attempt to introduce storytelling and design into the development of a critical model to challenge the current narrative regarding the relation between man and nature.
Bureau LADA with Fisheye. Fisheye - Return of the Eel is a speculative research project into water biodiversity as a model for a 'water-related society' in which humans play a secondary role.
Studio Wild with The Forbidden Garden of Europe. The Forbidden Garden of Europe examines to what extent spatial and social factors influence inclusive ways of living together.

main locations of La Biennale Architettura 2020 - How will we live together?
In addition to the joint call, the Creative Industries Fund NL issued an open call for projects at the main locations of La Biennale, responding to the theme 'How will we live together?'. Within this theme, Sarkis focuses on the five major social themes of today - 'individuals', 'new households', 'emerging communities', 'across borders', and 'one planet'. He invited six groups with Dutch backgrounds to apply to exhibit in one of the main locations, of which three design teams have been selected.

selection development budget main locations
Studio L A with City of Ceramics. City of Ceramics is an installation consisting of a map of Venice on a floor of fragile terrazzo tiles. With each step, cracks appear until, at the end of the Biennale, the map is smashed to pieces, allowing visitors to reflect on their own presence in the city.
Foundation for Achieving Seamless Territory (FAST) with Watermelons, Sardines, Crabs, Sands, and other Sediments. This project examines the ecological problems in the Gaza Strip. In an installation consisting of a long dinner table with various objects, the results of the relationship between ecology, culture and politics in Gaza are presented.
Alessandra Covini and Giovanni Bellotti with Variations on a Birdcage. Variations on a Birdcage is an investigation into objects that provide a direct encounter between humans and animals. This results in a playful installation that both people and birds can influence by playing, transforming, cultivating and feeding.

The selection committee consisted of André de Baerdemaeker (ecologist Bureau Stadsnatuur and Natural History Museum Rotterdam), prof. dr. Caroline Nevejan (chief science officer for the city of Amsterdam) and Marieke Berkers (architecture historian and member External Advisory Committee Landscape Architecture & Planning (WUR)).

background
Het Nieuwe Instituut and the Creative Industries Fund NL join forces to make optimal use of the 17th International Architecture Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia as an international platform for current spatial and social issues, acting as a catalyst for an ongoing discussion on the significance of architecture for our way of living together. The aim is to represent a wide range of voices from the Dutch design field in Venice.