Saturday, July 31, 2010

La Biennale Architecture 2010 - People Meet in Architecture

(Venice, Italy) La Biennale sent over a press release about the collateral events at this year's Architecture Exhibition, the 12th edition, and it sounds so innovative that I am going to share it with you in its entirety. This year's Director is Kazuyo Sejima, who is not only an actual architect, she is also an actual woman -- the first female Director ever -- so I am really looking forward to seeing life from her point of view. When the architects were here two years ago, all of Venice came to life. They flooded the streets, bars, restaurants and hotels of the city with their particular brand of creative energy, unique and refreshing. (That image you see is Frank Gehry's project back in 2008 from the very cool site I just loved the architects, and listening to the way their minds work. You can read that Venetian Cat Blog by clicking here:

One particular group of students and I had an interesting discussion when we shared a table at lunch. I asked them what type of project they would create in Venice, and they said they wouldn't create a building, they would create a space. 

I told them I had always dreamed of creating a Baby Park like they have in New York City along the Hudson River down by the West Village. The architects completely transformed the river, which used to be filled with dead bodies and drugs, so dangerous you could not go past Washington Street, into one of the most desirable areas in NYC. Using housing and design, the entire river came to life. And when they put in the Baby Park -- no one over twelve-years-old allowed to enter unless accompanied by a child -- guess what happened? Right! The West Village became full of babies! (I wrote about this phenomenon in my second novel, HARLEY'S NINTH.) Since the Forces of Evil continue to chip away at Venice's fragile infrastructure, and the resident population continues to decline, in my opinion a new Baby Park, say, over in Campo San Polo, would be the perfect solution to counteract that energy.

By the way, I piece I wrote entitled "Conversation With a Gondolier" that focuses on this situation has just been published by Gadling/AOL after Red Room, a writer's website I belong to, hooked me up with them. Under the terms of our agreement, Gadling/AOL has exclusive rights for six months so I can't give you an excerpt. I can, however, provide you with the links:

Click to go to my article on Gadling:

Click to go to my Red Room blog:

Here is the La Biennale press release:
la Biennale di Venezia
12th International Architecture Exhibition
People meet in Architecture

Collateral events

Venice, July 30 – 20 Collateral Events will be presented at the 12th International Architecture Exhibition, with the title of People meet in Architecture, directed by Kazuyo Sejima and organized by la Biennale di Venezia under the presidency of Paolo Baratta (Preview August, 26th-27th-28th 2010) that will be open to the public from Sunday 29th August to Sunday 21st November 2010.

The Collateral Events are proposed by international organizations and institutions which organize their own exhibitions and initiatives in Venice. With their proposals and initiatives, the Collateral Events represent an original and significant enrichment of the program of the International Exhibition.

A Park dedicated to Giuseppe Ungaretti
Castello, 6113 (Borgoloco P. Molmenti)
from August 29 to September 26
Organization: Associazione Amici di Castelnuovo

Asian View of Life
Ex Magazzini del Sale, Salone del Sale, Dorsoduro
from August 29 to October 15
OrganizationCentro Italiano per le Arti e la Cultura

Beyond Entropy : when Energy becomes Form
Fondazione Giorgio Cini, San Giorgio Maggiore Island
from August 27 to September 19
Organization: Architectural Association School of Architecture



green ethics – habitat - environment
Arsenale Novissimo – Spazio Thetis
from August 26 to November 21
Organization: Politecnico di Torino

De l’Objet à la Ville avec l’École nationale supérieure des Arts Décoratifs
Istituto Veneto di Scienze Lettere ed Arti, Palazzo Loredan, San Marco 2495 (Campo Santo Stefano)
from August 29 to November 21
Organization: École nationale supérieure des Arts Décoratifs

"On site" considerations on the future of vulnerable cities
Arsenale Novissimo – Spazio Thetis – Padiglione “Modelli”
from August 29 to November 21
Organization: Università degli Studi di Roma “Sapienza”, Facoltà “Ludovico Quaroni”, Dipartimento Architettura e Progetto, with Technische Universität Darmstadt, Fachbereich Entwerfen und Wohnungsbau

Il vuoto e le forme 2010
Arsenale, Castello, 2126/A (Campo della Tana)
from August 29 to November 21
OrganizationDIET Dipartimento di Ingegneria Edile e del Territorio dell’Università degli Studi di Pavia

Immaterial spaces
San Servolo Island, Edificio 17
from August 26 to September 30
Organization: Art Experience

Le cattedrali del vino. The meeting of two cultures
Hotel Danieli – Saloni Marco Polo, Castello, 4196 (Riva Schiavoni)
from August 28 to September 9
Organization: O.A.R. - Ordine degli Architetti Pianificatori, Paesaggisti e Conservatori di Roma e Provincia and IN/ARCH - Istituto Nazionale di Architettura

Arsenale Novissimo – Nappa 89
from August 27 to August 29
Organization: ARTIMAGE CONTEMPORARY informe

M9 - A New Museum for a New City. The International Architectural Competition
Via Alessandro Poerio, 24, Venezia - Mestre
from August 28 to November 21
Organization: Fondazione di Venezia

Mapping Contemporary Venice
from the city of today to the Venice of the future
Venice International University - VIU, San Servolo Island
from August 26 to September 20
OrganizationVenice International University – VIU

Ca’ASI, Cannaregio, 6024 (Campiello Santa Maria Nova)
from September 25 to November 21
Organization: Ca’ASI Association

Paris La Défense Seine Arche, Alex MacLean Given a Free Hand
Ca’ASI, Cannaregio, 6024 (Campiello Santa Maria Nova)
from August 29 to September 19
Organization: Public Development Authorities of La Défense Seine Arche

Provincia italiana – The Italian Provinces

Different venues in the towns of Bassano del Grappa, Caldogno, Montorso Vicentino, Possagno, Schio, Valdagno, Venezia, Vicenza, and those of the Camposampierese area.
from September 2  to November 19
Organization: Fuoribiennale and C4-Centro Cultura Contemporaneo Caldogno  with Centro Studi Usine

Quotidian Architectures: Hong Kong in Venice
Arsenale, Castello, 2126 (Campo della Tana)
from August 27 to November 21
OrganizationThe Hong Kong Institute of Architects and Hong Kong Arts Development Council


Palazzo Ducale, Loggia Foscara
from August 29 to October 30
Organization: fuori_vista

Take A Break: Spatial Variability in Contemporary Taiwan
Palazzo delle Prigioni, San Marco, Castello, 4209
from August 26 to November 21
OrganizationThe National Taiwan Museum of Fine Arts (NTMOFA)

The Bearable Lightness of Being – The Metaphor of the Space 2
Arsenale Novissimo – Tesa di San Cristoforo 94
from August 28 to October 7
Organization: Fondazione Mudima

The Garden and Beyond: A Global Garden
ESU Venezia – sala polivalente “Nardocci”, Dorsoduro, 3861 (Calle larga Foscari); VELA-Actv – info point “Hellovenezia”, Isola Nova del Tronchetto, 21
from August 29 to November 21
Organization: Associazione Culturale Gruppo Giovani Pittori Spilimberghesi

Ciao from Venice,

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