Democratic Design Arrives at Venice Biennale

One of the highlights of the global architectural calendar, the Biennale is a place to share and discuss the big ideas impacting the field. For this year's U.S. Pavilion, curators are going small by showcasing 124 projects by self-empowered citizens.

In keeping with the Biennale's theme of "Common Ground", which recognizes that architectural culture is not just made up of "singular talents," curator Cathy Lang Ho, editor at Architecture Magazine and Institute for Urban Design Board Member, focused the exhibit for the U.S. pavilion on DIY and Guerrilla Urbanism "as actions that address larger social issues."

Janelle Zara previews the design of the pavilion that will host "Spontaneous Interventions: Design Actions for the Common Good." The design is "a collaborative effort between commissioner and curator Cathy Lang Ho, Brooklyn-based architectural firm Freecell, and Berkeley, California-based graphic designers MAD, which aims to actively engage its viewers by taking a similarly democratic tone."

"A kinetic installation of 124 banners, each bearing an image and description of the urban architectural projects being presented, hangs from the ceiling of the galleries," explains Zara. "In the empowering spirit of the exhibition, viewers are meant to reach up, pull them down, and interact with them on their own level."

"Outside, as a welcome respite from the text-heavy, conceptually weighty exhibition, Brooklyn's Interboro architects will provide Commonplace, an outdoor living room for viewers to rest their weary heels."

 

Full Story: Preview the Venice Architecture Biennale's U.S. Pavilion, An Exercise in Democratic Design

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