- A recap of the 2016 Venice Biennale.
“Reporting from the Front” - a challenging title, and according to the final results released by La Biennale di Venezia headed by Paolo Baratta a great success with the general public. Here are the figures of the International Architecture Exhibition: 259,725 visitors added to the 14,180 people who attended the preview, up by 14% and 16%, respectively.
Right from the outset, the 2016 Pritzker prize-winner Alejandro Aravena stood out for his cross-cutting and highly communicative approach to the Biennale, which also attracted visitors from outside the close-knit circle of the trade.
A predisposition for narration of the work could also be seen in the choice of curators, who included David Basulto, co-founder of ArchDaily with James Taylor-Foster, editor at large of ArchDaily Europe as curators of the Nordic pavilion (link),, and of publicity campaigns like the do-it-yourself videos promoting the Germany Pavilion curated by DAM (link).
“Reporting from the Front” therefore emerged with a more open, multidisciplinary, definitely emblematic line, in order to get across the extremely political nature of architecture in all its forms. Geopolitics was the centre of attention, covering the migration and hospitality issues showcased in the Germany and Austria pavilions, through to Eyal Weizman's forensic architecture in the central pavilion. Without neglecting urbanistic aspects focusing on national problems, where architects gave real responses to housing needs, and therefore to the living needs of people. Not surprisingly, theSpain pavilion with its “Unfinished” theme won the Golden Lion (link) or best national participation. Their contribution was an exploration of the current state of architecture in Spain, which survives through the creativity of its designers, who have used the crisis to come up with new forms of expression and partnerships.
If you didn't make it to the exhibition, you can enjoy the digital experience of the Architecture Biennale, which GoogleArt (link), put online, just one more way of sharing a great event.
15th International Architecture Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia
28 May to 27 November 2016
Images: © Gianluca Giordano