TOP 15: the most interesting pavilions of the Venice Biennale

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We tell about the most interesting pavilions of the participating countries of the Venice Architecture Biennale

Russia presented at the 16th Venice Architecture Biennale an exposition dedicated to the construction and operation of the railway. The opening of the exhibition “Station“ Russia ”in the Russian Pavilion took place on May 23, 2018.

The project is connected with the theme“ Free Space ”declared by the curators of the Biennale, which is of particular importance for Russia. Russia is inhabited where the railway passes. The railway has served and will continue to serve as a tool for conquering the endless Russian space for a long time to come. The general partner of the Pavilion this year is Russian Railways.

Russian Pavilion, architect Alexey Shchusev, 1914.

The exhibition consists of five parts, each of which has a separate hall.

In the first hall “Introduction to Geography” there is a video telling about the scale of the country, traffic intensity, passenger traffic and railway stations of our country. In the second hall of the Project Depot, old and modern photographs of railway stations and passengers, footage from surveillance cameras are presented. In the center of the hall there is a model of the first, Pavlovsky station, hovering over the stairs.

The third is the “Expectation of the Future” hall – a futuristic project of the NER group dedicated to reflections on the theme of railway stations in megacities. Plus, a modern proposal for the development of the area of ​​three stations in Moscow. In the fourth hall there is a “Waiting room” filled with cells with artifacts on both sides and an installation made of forgotten/lost suitcases. In the last fifth hall, in a large frozen window, imitating a carriage, the film “7 days in 7 minutes” is shown, filmed by a young Moscow director Daniil Zinchenko, who went on a journey across the country to meet his grandfather, who lives in Vladivostok.

Project of the Moscow-Kazan highway, Nikolai Shumakov.

Estonian Pavilion dedicated to reconstruction of the old church Santa Maria Ausiliatrice in the Baroque style. The space of the church is divided into two parts by a concrete wall, which is part of the installation. The curators of the exhibition have preserved the main elements of the church – the columns and sidewalks – and renovated the space with concrete. Inside there is an exhibition “Weak monuments”, where the organizers reveal the concepts of “weakness” and “monumentality” in architecture.

Israeli Pavilion dedicated to the history of negotiations in the Holy Lands. The pavilion curators are trying to trace the complex mechanism of the “status quo” in the lands of Israel and Palestine, where the two states have a fragile system of relationships. The pavilion reveals the history of the three monotheistic religions in the Holy Lands and the value of peaceful conflict resolution.

Greek Pavilion explores public academic spaces, from museums to universities. The pavilion is presented in the form of a multi-level space, in which there are 56 models of educational spaces from around the world made using 3D printing. All works were divided into periods, scales and spatial strategies. Visitors can navigate through them thanks to a special map and catalog.

Spanish Pavilion created with the participation of students of the country's architectural universities, who presented their projects for the reconstruction of the pavilion's appearance. The space is devoted to reflections on the architecture of educational spaces of the present and the future, the fusion of the real and virtual worlds. For the first time, doctoral dissertations from architectural universities are presented.

< span class = "ql-cursor"> Pakistani Pavilion The Fold will appear for the first time at the Venice Biennale. The curators dedicated the pavilion to the problem of the dense population of settlements in Karachi. This city has long served as the main financial and industrial center of Pakistan, which is why the influx of emigrants has noticeably increased. The city began to be built up with a large number of unofficial housing: only 8.1% of the city's territory is now home to more than 60% of the population. The main idea is to explore harmonious coexistence in a confined space.

Vatican Pavilion presented for the first time at the Venice Biennale. The creators of the project were inspired by the architecture of the Wooden Chapel, built in 1920 by Gunnar Asplund in Stockholm. The chapel building is covered with 9000 wooden tiles, and inside there is an exhibition of sketches by Gunnar Asplundo, illustrating the concept and construction process of the original chapel.

Danish Pavilion reflects on the power of innovation. The exhibition focuses on international advances in areas such as mobility, cultural sustainability and resource efficiency. One of the exhibits will be BLOX, the new OMA office building in Copenhagen. It is a multifunctional building that illustrates how architectural innovation and collaborative effort can lead to revolutionary lifestyles.

The Swiss Pavilion is dedicated to the ambiance of modern living. Visitors to the Biennale are invited to view the standard interior of the apartment. In preparation for this tour, the curatorial team put together an extensive archive of unfurnished photographs to recreate the look of a typical Swiss living space.

The Chinese Pavilion is dedicated to the theme “Building the Future Village”. The curators sought to highlight the problem of rural development in China. In the east of the country, the village has long been a new area for experimentation.

Curators of the Austrian Pavilion state, “Cities are largely determined by their public spaces.” The purpose of the pavilion is to show that it is thanks to high-quality public spaces that a balance can be found in the work of the city, and that it can act with an eye to the future. For the Austrian project, three concept teams developed a three-part interdependent spatial setup.

The Japanese Pavilion is dedicated to the problem of access to resources and their use. Curators want to say that one of the main roles of 21st century architecture is to overcome the barrier to resource availability. The aim of this exhibition is to create platforms for active discussion of environmental issues in architectural and urban theory.

Finnish Pavilion is dedicated to the arrangement of the libraries of the future. The representatives of Finland were inspired by the architectural projects of Alvar Aalto. The exhibition explores the development of Finnish library architecture and seeks to design a true library of the future. The project focuses on the construction of a new Helsinki Central Library, designed by ALA Architects. It will open in December 2018.

< span class = "ql-cursor"> The Scandinavian Pavilion explores the possibility of interaction between nature and architecture. Finnish architecture firm Lundén has been selected to design the pavilion. The aim of the project is to explore new ways of designing buildings that will highlight the invisible interaction between the constructed building and the natural environment.

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The Portuguese Pavilion consists of 12 expositions. Public Without Rhetoric is a project developed by the curators of the exhibition to represent Portugal. Since the beginning of the 2007 crisis, there has been a reduction in investments in the improvement of the city, but during this time a significant number of high-quality public places have been built, which Portuguese architects want to show.

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