La Biennale di Venezia has postponed the opening of the 17th International Architecture Exhibition, "How will we live together?" curated by architect Hashim Sarkis. The exhibition will not open at the end of May as usual, but on August 29 (with a pre-opening on August 27 and 28), continuing until November 29. The change is dictated by the need to allow enough time for all the institutions and architects involved in the national pavilions and the international exhibition time to set them up; the recent precautionary measures adopted by various countries, and limitation of flights, would have had inevitable repercussions on the mobility of people and projects, and therefore the exhibition set-up. Hence the decision to postpone the opening date by fully three months, considered sufficient time for an organisation as complex as Biennale di Architettura to complete preparations to welcome the public.
Architects and institutions from all over the world are involved in the national participations and the International Architecture Exhibition on the theme of "How will we live together?" at the 2020 Architecture Biennale. 63 countries will have their own pavilions in the historic Giardini, Arsenale and city centre of Venice, including a number of first-time participants: Grenada, Iraq and Uzbekistan. The Italian Pavilion in its historic location at Tese delle Vergini in the Arsenale will be curated by architect Alessandro Melis.
The International Architecture Exhibition will have 114 competing participants from 46 different countries, exhibiting in the Central Pavilion at the Giardini, the Arsenale and Forte Marghera. The curator emphasises that there are more women and more participants from countries in Africa, Latin America and Asia this year. Non-competing exhibits on the theme of the exhibition will include Stations + Cohabitats, “research stations” developed by university researchers from all over the world. The outdoor spaces in the Arsenale and Giardini will present large installations connected to each of the five scales into which "How will we live together?" is organised. The scales are projects ranging from analytic to conceptual, from experimental to proven and widely used, broken down as follows: three in the Arsenale (Among Diverse Beings, As New Households and As Emerging Communities) and two in the Central Pavilion (Across Borders and As One Planet). In Forte Marghera, "How will we play together?" will be a project devoted to children’s play reflecting the title of the exhibition as a whole, developed by five architects and an architecture photographer.
British Mosques is the Special Project in the Applied Arts Pavilion in the Sale d’Armi at the Arsenale, presented by La Biennale di Venezia and the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. In collaboration with architect Shahed Saleem, the exhibition will focus on three case studies of buildings that were not originally built as mosques, but have been adapted for this use in “self-built” projects.
In a series of six Weekends on Architecture scheduled for October and November 2020, Biennale Sessions for universities and higher education institutions and the Educational series of activities for schools complete the programme of the 17th International Architecture Exhibition.
Images courtesy of La Biennale di Venezia, photos by Andrea Avezzù, Francesco Galli, Jacopo Salvi, Giulio Squillacciotti