Venice Architecture Biennale

16th Venice International Architecture Biennale 2018: extension of the call for projects

"Freespace" is the theme set for the call for applications for the 16th Venice International Architecture Biennale, which will take place from 26 May to 25 November 2018. Due to the late publication of the theme, the call for projects for the French pavilion will be extended until 20 August 2017.
L’The call for projects is open to architects, or to a multidisciplinary team associating at least one confirmed architect, leader, and one young architect under 40 years of age. Candidates are invited to register their project within the guidelines defined by the General Curator of this 16th International Biennial of Architecture, entrusted this year to the founders of the agency. Grafton Architects, Yvonne Farrell and Shelley McNamara. The Biennial will take place from 26 May to 25 November 2018 (professional days: 24 and 25 May 2018).
Following the announcement of the general theme of the 16th Venice International Architecture Biennale, the French Institute, operator of the French Pavilion on behalf of the Ministry of Europe and Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Culture, is extending its call for projects for the French Pavilion until 20 August.
All the application modalities are online at the site of the French Institute.
Yvonne Farrell and Shelley McNamara have titled the 16th International Architecture Exhibition, Freespace and explain their choice.
"Freespace represents generosity of spirit and a sense of humanity at the heart of the intentions of architecture, with an emphasis on the quality of the space itself. Freespace emphasizes architecture's ability to give the gift of free and complementary space to those who use it, as well as its ability to respond to the unspoken desires of strangers. Freespace celebrates architecture's ability to regain a generosity that is new and unexpected in every project - even under conditions where the restrictions required are for privacy, defense, exclusivity, or commercial limitations. It is an opportunity to emphasize the gifts of nature, such as light - sunlight and moonlight, - air, the force of gravity, materials from natural resources or those made by man.
Freespace encourages us to review our ways of thinking, to stimulate our perceptions of the world in different ways, to invent solutions in which architecture acts for the well-being and dignity of every inhabitant of this fragile planet.
Freespace can be a place of opportunities, a democratic, non-programmed and free space for as yet undefined uses. There are unintentional and unplanned exchanges between people and buildings, whereby the buildings themselves create new ways of sharing and engaging with people over time, long after the architect has left the scene. Architecture has an active as well as a passive lifestyle.
Freespace encompasses the freedom to imagine, the free space of time and memory, linking past, present and future, building on the dimensions of our acquired cultural heritage, linking the archaic with the contemporary.
On the theme of Freespace, the Architecture Biennial 2018 will present, to the appreciation and under the watchful eye of the public, examples, proposals, elements - built or not - of these works that illustrate the essential qualities of architecture, which address the modulation, richness and materiality of surfaces.
The orchestration and sequencing of the movement reveals the inherent power and beauty of the architecture. The exhibition will have a spatial and physical presence, of such scale and quality, that a strong impact will be created on the visitor, communicating the spatial and complex nature of the architecture.
The exhibition invites the many visitors who will come to the Biennale to engage emotionally and intellectually with architecture, in order to better understand it, to stimulate debate on its fundamentals and to commemorate its real and lasting contribution to humanity.
When Jørn Utzon designed the concrete and tiled seat at the entrance to the Can Lis in Mallorca, it was perfectly designed and modelled for the human body, for its comfort and well-being. Spatially, it is an expression of welcome and the "word" welcome.
Angelo Mangiarotti "says" the same thing at the entrance to 24 Via Quadronno in Milan, where a gently sloping path, with a seat at the threshold of the entrance, 'holds' you and welcomes you as if you were at home on your return from the city.
Lina Bo Bardi has raised the Museum of Modern Art in Sao Paolo to create a 'belvedere' so that visitors can have a bird's eye view of the city.
 The Palazzo Medici-Riccardi in Florence represents power and wealth, but the stone seats that form the majestic exterior facade turn the building upside down and almost upside down. Thus, the massive exterior wall also becomes a wall enclosing a public space. What appears to be a solid, closed structure, seems to open outwards with a generous air.
We believe that everyone is entitled to the benefits of architecture. The role of architecture is indeed to shelter our bodies and elevate our spirits. A beautiful wall of a building on the side of the road pleases passers-by, even if they never enter it. The same is true with a glimpse of a courtyard through an arcade or a place to lean against the shade or a nook that offers shelter from wind and rain. What interests us is to go beyond the visible, focusing on the role of architecture in the choreography of everyday life.
We consider Earth as a Customer. This implies a series of long-term responsibilities. Architecture is the interplay of light, sun, shadow, moon, air, wind, the force of gravity, in order to reveal the mysteries of the world and all those resources that are free (or gifts).
The 16th International Architecture Exhibition will celebrate examples of the generosity and thoughtfulness of architecture around the world. We believe that these qualities support the fundamental ability of architecture to nurture and sustain the meaningful contact that exists between man and space. We focus our attention on these qualities because we consider that optimism and continuity are intrinsic to them. Architecture that embodies these qualities with generosity and a desire for exchange is precisely what we call Freespace.
We invite all participants and all national pavilions in Venice, to present their Freespace, so that together we can reveal the diversity, specificity and continuity of architecture based on people, places, time and history, to promote culture and the relevant importance of architecture on this dynamic planet.
"A society becomes great when old people plant trees under which they know they will never be able to sit in the shade" - a Greek proverb. »
President Paolo Baratta said: "As in previous editions of the Architecture Biennale, we are continuing our investigation into the relationship between architecture and civil society. The gap between architecture and civil society, caused by the growing difficulty of the latter to express its needs and find appropriate responses, has manifested itself in spectacular urban developments whose main characteristic is the marked and serious absence of public spaces or also the growth of areas in the suburbs and outskirts of our cities, dominated and governed by indifference. The absence of architecture impoverishes the world and reduces the level of public welfare, which is otherwise affected by economic and demographic developments. Rediscovering architecture means renewing a strong desire for the quality of the spaces in which we live, which constitute a form of public wealth and an asset that must be constantly protected, renewed and created. This is the path pursued by the next Biennial of Architecture".
As usual, the 16th International Architecture Exhibition will also present the National Participations with their own exhibitions in the Giardini and Arsenale pavilions as well as in the historic centre of Venice.
This edition will also include selected Collateral Events, proposed by international organisations and institutions, which will present their exhibitions and initiatives in Venice at the same time as the 16th Exhibition.
Official website:
Official Hashtag: #BiennialArchitettura2018

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