It’s going to be a “Research Biennale” conscious of the past and the national identity, directed by Rem Koolhaas in Venice (opening June 7th, lasting six months instead of the usual three) engaging 65 Countries ( 11 more than the last edition).
The 14th International Architecture Exhibition entitled Fundamentals is the outcome of nearly two years of an “in-depth study”, a Biennial of “Architecture and not of Architects” and Concrete, defining again the clear-cut separation from Art, aiming at the analysis andrecovery of the history of the modernity of the past one hundred years. “An exhibition open to a wide public” explained Paolo Baratta chairman of Biennale. “With Rem Koolhaas, our aim is to create an exceptional, research-centred Architecture Biennale, Paolo Baratta states.
“And here Koolhaas goes straight to the point. With great courage and ambition, after having traced the history of modernity over the past 100 years to the present, he identifies and presents the elements that should act as references for a generated relationship between us and architecture (Elements of Architecture).
“The specific goal for the Monditalia section of the Exhibition, at the Corderie, is to gather and illustrate significant dimensions of Italy by means of ad-hoc studies. The result aims to remind us of the complex Italian reality, which is paradigm of not just local but global complexities that must not be denied or concealed. By revealing these realities we are able to access references that are also able to inspire new architecture.
This year the Italian Pavilion is based in the Arsenale and organized by the Italian Ministry for Cultural Heritage and Activities with PaBAAC (General Direction for landscape, fine arts, architecture and contemporary art). It is curated by Cino Zucchi.
“Fundamentals consists of three interlocking exhibitions – Absorbing Modernity 1914-2014, Elements of Architecture and Monditalia – that together illuminate the past, present and future of our discipline. After several architecture Biennales dedicated to the celebration of the contemporary, Fundamentals will look at histories, attempt to reconstruct how architecture finds itself in its current situation, and speculate on its future” Rem Koolhaas states.
We rely on the curators’ competence and cultural depth, although, due to the conditions, we fear a far too retrospective picture. The wish to avoid any party spirit, free from the ongoing debates and disputes is understandable… however the Biennale risks to be old-fashioned, a plunge back into the past, a meticulous and most boring view.
… for the time being no prejudice, we’ll express our opinions next June.
Renata Sias, editor of WOW! Webmagazine