Biennale Architettura 2018 “Freespace”

Corderie 2 – Giulio Squillacciotti – Courtesy La Biennale di Venezia

Open to the public from Saturday May 26th to Sunday November 25th 2018, at the Giardini and the Arsenale, the 16th International Architecture Exhibition, titled FREESPACE, will be curated by Yvonne Farrell and Shelley McNamara and organized by La Biennale di Venezia chaired by Paolo Baratta. The preview will take place on May 24th and 25th, the awards ceremony and inauguration will be held on Saturday May 26th 2018. Yvonne Farrell and Shelley McNamara have used the Manifesto FREESPACE, issued in June 2017, as a reference point for putting this Exhibition together. «We have found it to be a robust tool» they stated. «It has acted as a measure and a guide to finding cohesion within the diversity of an Exhibition of this enormous scale.» The Exhibition FREESPACE will develop from the Central Pavilion (Giardini) to the Arsenale, and will include 71 participants. The 71 participants will be joined by others gathered in two Special Sections: the first numbering, 16 participants, is titled Close Encounter, meetings with remarkable projects and will present works that originate in a reflection on well-known buildings of the past; the second which counts, 13 participants, and is titled The Practice of Teaching, will collect projects developed as part of teaching experiences.

Gaggiandre-Photo by Andrea Avezzu – Courtesy of La Biennale di Venezia

COUNTRIES AND COLLATERAL EVENTS
The Exhibition will also include 65 National Participations in the historic Pavilions at the Giardini, at the Arsenale and in the historic city centre of Venice. 7 countries will be participating in the Biennale Architettura for the first time: Antigua & Barbuda, Saudi Arabia, Guatemala, Lebanon, Mongolia, Pakistan and the Holy See (with its own pavilion located on the island of San Giorgio Maggiore). The Italian Pavilion at the Tese delle Vergini in the Arsenale, sponsored and promoted by the Ministero dei Beni e delle Attività Culturali e del Turismo, Direzione Generale Arte e Architettura Contemporanee e Periferie Urbane, will be curated by Mario Cucinella and will be titled Arcipelago Italia. This edition will once again feature, selected Collateral Events. Promoted by non-profit national and international institutions, they will present their exhibitions and initiatives in Venice during the 16th International Architecture Exhibition.

Robin Hood Gardens, completed 1972, designed by Alison and Peter Smithson © The Victoria and Albert Museum, London (2)

SPECIAL PROJECTS
There will be two Special Projects at the Biennale Architettura 2018: – the Forte Marghera Special Project in Mestre, curated by Yvonne Farrell and Shelley McNamara, consists of an installation by architects Sami Rintala and Dagur Eggertsson, also built to host a series of events scheduled in Forte Marghera. – the Special Project at the Applied Arts Pavilion in the Sale d’Armi in the Arsenale, reflects upon the future of social housing by presenting a fragment of the social housing estate, Robin Hood Gardens, which was designed by Alison and Peter Smithson in East London and completed in 1972. Renewed for the third consecutive year, the collaboration between La Biennale and the Victoria and Albert Museum in London has made possible this exhibition curated by Christopher Turner and Olivia Horsfall Turner.

SPECIAL PROJECTS
The Biennale Architettura 2018 will be accompanied throughout its duration by a programme of conversations: Meetings on Architecture, curated by Farrell and McNamara, are an opportunity to discuss the different interpretations of the Manifesto FREESPACE and to listen to the voices of the protagonists of the Exhibition. The program of Meetings will be complemented by contributions from the Participating Countries and a calendar of conferences organized in collaboration with international institutions such as the London School of Economics/Cities and Alfred Herrhaussen Gesselschaft, and with the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. Finally, the Historical Archive of La Biennale di Venezia will present a meeting focused on architecture in the archives. The detailed programme will be available online in the following weeks.

Official hashtags: #BiennaleArchitettura2018 #Freespace