“Close Encounter: Meetings with Remarkable Buildings” at the Glucksman Cork

Curated by Yvonne Farrell and Shelley McNamara, Close Encounter: Meetings with Remarkable Buildings was presented at the 2018 Venice Architecture Biennale as part of the FREESPACE exhibition in the Central Pavilion.


“Close Encounter” Venice Biennale 2018


“Together with our collaborator, Hugh Campbell, we asked sixteen contemporary practicing architect teams to research one selected building, each of which was chosen by us. Close Encounter calls on the generosity of each of the invited architects to ‘take’ the work of another architect and help it to be remembered, understood, re-valued and appreciated for its own inherent worth”- Yvonne Farrell and Shelley McNamara, Curators, Venice Biennale 2018. (more…)

“New Human, New Housing – Architecture Of The New Frankfurt 1925 – 1933” at DAM

In the 1920s, Frankfurt/Main emerged as an archetypal metropolis of the Modern Age. In many fields the architects working on behalf of the City were performing pioneering work, which in the 1920s gave Frankfurt a worldwide reputation as a Modernist stronghold and would define architecture and urban development for decades to come.


Innenhof des Wohnblocks an der Bruchfeldstraße (um 1930) Copyright: DAF, Bestand Grünflächenamt


In the 1920s, Frankfurt\Main became the center of an unprecedented program of architectural and cultural renewal that would enter the history books under the name of “New Frankfurt”. Under Lord Mayor Ludwig Landmann and his Municipal Building Councilor Ernst May, Modernism as a way of life took shape. The heart of the project was a model housing and urban development program of international significance. (more…)

“Superstudio. Life after Architecture” at Frac Centre-Val de Loire

“Superstudio. Life after Architecture” is the first major exhibition in France dedicated to the work of this Italian group. The exhibition will present the most significant artworks over the entire floor area of the Frac Centre-Val de Loire (1 000 square metres).


“Life after architecture” © Superstudio


Founded in 1966 in Florence by Adolfo Natalini and Cristiano Toraldo di Francia, who were later joined by Gian Piero Frassinelli (in 1968), Roberto and Alessandro Magris, as well as Andrea Poli (between 1970 and 1972), Superstudio was one of the most influential architectural groups of the global avant-gardist scene in the 1960-1970s. (more…)

“Balkrishna Doshi. Architecture for the People” at Vitra Design Museum Gallery

With the exhibition “Balkrishna Doshi: Architecture for the People”, Vitra Design Museum presents the first international retrospective about the 2018 Pritzker Prize laureate Balkrishna Doshi (born 1927, Pune, India) outside of Asia.


Balkrishna Doshi, Kamala House, Ahmedabad, 1963, 1986 © Vastushilpa Foundation, Ahmedabad


The renowned architect and urban planner is one of the few pioneers of modern architecture in his home country and the first Indian architect to receive the prestigious award. During over 60 years of practice, Doshi has realized a wide range of projects, adopting principles of modern architecture and adapting them to local culture, traditions, resources, and nature. (more…)

“Dogma – Rooms” at deSingel International Arts Campus

The exhibition Rooms explores the domestic space via its simplest manifestation: a room. Taking this as a starting point, Dogma presents the results of two distinct lines of enquiry: The Room of One’s Own, which focuses on the history and function of the private room, and Loveless, which charts the evolution of the ‘minimum dwelling’.


Dogma – Rooms © Dogma


While the American architect Louis Kahn (1901-1974) considered the room to be the essential origin of architecture, the British author Virginia Woolf (1882-1941) emphasized the private space as being vital to female creativity in ‘A Room of One’s Own’ (1929). At the time of writing, her words were a direct challenge to the patriarchal organization of the domestic sphere and, by extension, society at large. (more…)

“A Home for All: Six Experiments in Social Housing” at Victoria and Albert Museum

The challenge of providing housing for all is one that has faced governments and architects for over a century. This display presents six innovative projects from the collections of the RIBA and the V&A, each demonstrating a unique experiment in social housing design, providing lessons for today.


Keeling House, Claredale Street, Bethnal Green, London: detail of base of cluster block © RIBA Collections


Keeling House / Denys Lasdun & Partners. Constructed 1954-59, London. Keeling House was an early experiment in ‘cluster block’ housing. This innovative form placed four 16 storey blocks around a free-standing services tower. The linked blocks were designed to balance the existing community of the street with a sense of seclusion. Privacy was achieved with short access balconies that serve only two flats and face each other at oblique angles. The shared central platforms provided the communal services such as laundry. (more…)

Lacaton & Vassal wins 2017 BigMat Grand Prize for Architecture

The FRAC Nord-Pas de Calais art center, completed in 2013 by the French architects, follows the office building by Alberto Campo Baeza and the kitchen tower by Xaveer De Geyter as Grand Prize of the biannual award. The third edition of the BigMat International Architecture Award rewards European architecture with one Grand Prize (30.000€), six National Prizes (5.000€ each prize), six Category Prizes (1.500€ each prize), one Public Prize (1.500€) and one Special Mention for Young Architects.


BigMat '17 International Architecture Award ceremony at Palazzo Vecchio, Florence  © BigMat

BigMat ’17 International Architecture Award ceremony at Palazzo Vecchio, Florence © BigMat


The awards ceremony took place on November 24th, at the Palazzo Vecchio in Florence, Italy, in the presence of the architects competing for the Grand Prize, the members of the international panel of judges and the companies making up the BigMat Group. The selected 14 finalists were chosen from the initial selection of 87 participating teams of architects disclosed last July.

Out of a list of almost 900 projects from 7 European countries (Belgium, Czech Republic, France, Italy, Slovakia, Portugal and Spain), the panel of judges chaired by Jesús Aparicio and comprising Xaveer De Geyter (Belgium), Henrieta Moravčíková (Czech Republic + Slovakia), Marc Barani (France), Francesco Isidori (Italy), Paulo David (Portugal + Spain), and awards secretary Jesús Donaire, decided to give the BigMat ’17 International Architecture Award to the French National Fund for Contemporary Arts building ‘FRAC’ in Dunkirk, by French architects Lacaton & Vassal. (more…)

“Negotiating Ungers – The Aesthetics Of Sustainability” at CIVA Brussels

In 1980, the German architect Oswald Mathias Ungers participated in a competition for solar housing in the community of Landstuhl, Germany. Ungers’ design was never executed and has since fallen into oblivion, however with the project Ungers most clearly defined his approach to a sustainable architecture.

The project is used as a starting point to take a new look at both Ungers’ work and the concept of sustainability. During a summer school in July 2018 at the Ungers Archiv für Architekturwissenschaft in Cologne, the project was analyzed together with students from the KU Leuven, Faculty of Architecture and the Kunstakademie Düsseldorf.


“Negotiating Ungers — The Aesthetics Of Sustainability”
5 July – 22 September, 2019
CIVA Brussels
Rue de l’Ermitage Kluis 55, Brussels


Following the summer school, six students decided to continue their work on the subject and to further expand on the ideas developed in the discussions. The results are now presented in an exhibition at CIVA. Rather than delivering an overall interpretation of Ungers’ project, it represents a plurality of voices, reflections and interpretations of the design. Besides original drawings by Ungers, the exhibition includes installations and analytical presentations, which critically negotiate Ungers’ position on sustainability.

Oswald Mathias Ungers, Solarhaus, community of Landstuhl, Germany © OM Ungers

Oswald Mathias Ungers, Solarhaus, community of Landstuhl, Germany © OM Ungers

Oswald Mathias Ungers, Solarhaus, community of Landstuhl, Germany © OM Ungers

Oswald Mathias Ungers, Solarhaus, community of Landstuhl, Germany © OM Ungers


Students: Alessandro Cugola / Lisbeth Decloedt / Natasha Kurmashova / Tom Schoonjans / Juliane Seehawer / Fien Werckx


News source: CIVA Brussels
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“inservitude” exhibition at Arc en Rêve Bordeaux

Can architecture, a discipline defined by constraint, constantly reinvent itself via undisciplined creative utopias, architects, and modes of use? Between the political advent of the Enlightenment and that of 20th century totalitarianism, where do we stand in the art of “voluntary inservitude” and “reflexive indocility?


“inservitude” exhibition view © Arc en Rêve Bordeaux


The philosopher Guillaume le Blanc invites us to address these questions, and the exhibition inservitude explores the question of freedom as an essential raw material for architecture that offers potential alternatives. (more…)

“The Housing Laboratory. Éloge de la méthode” at Citè de l’Architecture

The challenge of this exhibition is to put into perspective a specific approach that is in line with the experiments that have marked the history of housing in France. The success of this project makes it a landmark that the Platform for Architectural Design has chosen to present as part of its “Laboratory Housing. “


Gare D’auteuil – Ensemble De Logements © Anne Demians, Francis Soler, Rudy Ricciotti, Finn Geipel


The exhibition Praise of the Method puts into perspective the specific approach of the operation of the Gare d’Auteuil. Unique urban piece, in line with the experiments that have marked the history of housing in France and fruit of an international competition launched by the City of Paris in 2008, this operation is carried out by a “collective of authors” consisting of four architects and a landscape architect: Anne Demians, Francis Soler, Rudy Ricciotti, Finn Geipel and Louis Benech. (more…)

“A poet of architecture. Pier Niccolò Berardi and Fiesole”

Thirty years after his death, Fiesole recalls with an exhibition the figure of Pier Niccolò Berardi (1904 -1989), painter and architect, exponent of the Italian rationalism movement, author of the Richard Ginori Museum at Doccia and with the ‘Gruppo Toscano’, of the Santa Maria Novella railway station in Florence, which, despite its activity in Italy and abroad, has been linked to its birthplace throughout life.


Stazione Santa Maria Novella, Gruppo Toscano: Giovanni Michelucci, Nello Baroni, Pier Niccolò Berardi, Italo Gamberini, Sarre Guarnieri and Leonardo Lusanna

Wanted by his daughter, Antonella Berardi, a poet of architecture. Pier Niccolò Berardi and Fiesole is the work of the architect Marco Romoli, his pupil and collaborator, and is carried out under the patronage of the Tuscany Region, the Municipality of Fiesole and the Giovanni Michelucci Foundation. (more…)

“Experimental Architecture Biennial” at Jaroslav Fragner Gallery

The fourth “Experimental Architecture Biennial” was formally launched in mid-June under the Digital Tactics banner. It will feature an exhibition presenting fifteen creatives from across the world.


“Filip Šlapal: Bauhaus” © Jaroslav Fragner Gallery


It will include representatives from the top Los Angeles-based SCI-Arc school; the Neri Oxman studio at the MIT Media Lab in Cambridge, Massachusetts; the Dutch UNStudio; the British-based Zaha Hadid Architects; the Vienna-based Moh architects; architects and teachers from the University of Innsbruck; and architects and teachers from the Bartlett School of Architecture in London. (more…)

“Giorgio de Chirico. Il volto della metafisica” at Palazzo Ducale Genova

Curated by Victoria Noel-Johnson and organised in collaboration with the Giorgio and Isa de Chirico Foundation, the exhibition chronicles the long and fruitful career of one of the most interesting and original artists in the history of twentiethcentury art. First acclaimed but later scorned by the surrealists, at all times Giorgio de Chirico followed his own personal idea of art, inspired by the philosophy of Schopenhauer and Nietzsche.


“Giorgio de Chirico. Il volto della metafisica” Giorgio de Chirico


His style of painting was metaphysical, seeking to overcome the appearance of reality. It was also a style that reflected his fascination with the classics. The exhibition presents all the great themes of the Pictor Optimus: his metaphysical exteriors (Italy’s town squares and towers); his mannequins, his disturbing muses and his archaeologists. Also on display are examples of his still lifes – or silent lifes, as de Chirico liked to call them – horses, copies or free interpretations of great masters such as Raphael and Perugino, as well as the famous self-portraits in period clothes in the style of Rubens or Velázquez. This is an exhibition that is also a journey, an eternally cyclical journey in search of self and beauty. (more…)

“Jannis Kounellis” at Fondazione Prada Venice

“Jannis Kounellis”, curated by Germano Celant, is the major retrospective dedicated to the artist following his death in 2017. Developed in collaboration with Archivio Kounellis, the project brings together more 60 works from 1959 to 2015, from both Italian and international museums , as well as from important private collections both in Italy and abroad.


“Jannis Kounellis” Fondazione Prada Venezia. Photo Agostino Osio – Alto Piano


The show explores the artistic and exhibition history of Jannis Kounellis (Piraeus 1936 – Rome 2017), establishing a dialogue between his works and the eighteenth-century spaces of Ca’ Corner della Regina. The artist’s early works, originally exhibited between 1960 and 1966, deal with urban language.


“Jannis Kounellis”
11 May – 24 November, 2019
Fondazione Prada Venice, Ca’ Corner della Regina
Calle de Ca’ Corner, Santa Croce 2215, Venezia


These paintings reproduce actual writings and signs from the streets of Rome. Later on, the artist transferred black letters, arrows and numbers onto white canvases, paper or other surfaces, in a language deconstruction that expresses a fragmentation of the real. From 1964 onward, Kounellis addressed subjects taken from nature, from sunsets to roses. In 1967 Kounellis’ investigation turned more radical, embracing concrete and natural elements including birds, soil, cacti, wool, coal, cotton, and fire.


“Jannis Kounellis” Fondazione Prada Venezia. Photo Agostino Osio – Alto Piano

“Jannis Kounellis” Fondazione Prada Venezia. Photo Agostino Osio – Alto Piano


Kounellis moved from a written and pictorial language to a physical and environmental one. Thus the use of organic and inorganic entities transformed his practice into corporeal experience, conceived as a sensorial transmission. In particular, the artist explored the sound dimension through which a painting is translated into sheet music to play or dance to. Already in 1960, Kounellis began chanting his letters on canvas, and in 1970 the artist included the presence of a musician or a dancer. An investigation into the olfactory, which began in 1969 with coffee, continued through the 1980s with elements like grappa, in order to escape the illusory limits of the painting and join with the virtual chaos of reality.


“Jannis Kounellis” Fondazione Prada Venezia. Photo Agostino Osio – Alto Piano

“Jannis Kounellis” Fondazione Prada Venezia. Photo Agostino Osio – Alto Piano



In the installations realized toward the end of the 1960s, the artist sets up a dialectic battle between the lightness, instability and temporal nature connected with the fragility of the organic element and the heaviness, permanence, artificiality and rigidity of industrial structures, represented by modular surfaces in gray-painted metal. Kounellis participated in exhibitions that paved the way to Arte Povera, which in turn translated into an authentic form of visual expression. An approach that recalls ancient culture, interpreted according to a contemporary spirit, in contrast with the loss of historical and social identity that took place during the postwar period.

Beginning in 1967, the year of the so-called “fire daisy,” the phenomenon of combustion began to appear frequently in the artist’s work: a “fire writing” that enlights the transformative and regenerative potential of flames. At the height of the mutation, according to alchemical tradition, we find gold, employed by the artist in multiple ways. In the installation Untitled (Tragedia civile) (1975), the contrast between the gold leaf that covers a bare wall and the black clothing hanging on a coat hanger underlines the dramatic nature of a scene that alludes to a personal and historical crisis. In Kounellis’ work smoke, naturally connected with fire, functions both as a residual of a pictorial process, and as proof of the passage of time. The traces of soot on stones, canvases and walls that characterize some of his works from 1979 and 1980 indicate a personal “return to painting,” in opposition to the anti-ideological and hedonistic approach employed in a large part of the painting production in the 1980s.


“Jannis Kounellis” Fondazione Prada Venezia. Photo Agostino Osio – Alto Piano


Throughout his artistic research Kounellis develops a tragic and personal relationship with culture and history, avoiding a refined and reverential attitude. He would eventually represent the past with an incomplete collection of fragments of classical statues, as in the work from 1974. Meanwhile, in other works the Greco-Roman heritage is explored through the mask, as in the 1973 installation made up of a wooden frame on which plaster casts of faces are placed. The door is another symbol of the artist’s intolerance for the dynamics of his present. The passageways between rooms are closed up with stones, iron reinforcing bars and lead sheets making several spaces inaccessible in order to emphasize their unknown, metaphysical and surreal dimension.

The exhibition narrative is completed with large-scale installations realized by Kounellis from the end of the 1980s. These ensembles envelop shelves or metal constructions containing objects of various origins: from musical instruments to sacks, from plaster casts to stones, from coats to glasses, from mechanical gears to fragments of furniture. The large interventions hosted in the central rooms of the two main floors of Ca’ Corner della Regina are included in this context. Already as early as 1967 Kounellis dealt with the motifs of gravity and equilibrium in his works. However, it wasn’t until the 1980s and 1990s that he developed a deeper dialogue with architectural and urban spaces. Both of these aspects would result in the monumental 1992’s installation presented in the internal courtyard of the Venetian palazzo. Originally conceived for the external façade of a building in Barcelona, it is composed of seven metal plates that support sacks filled with coffee beans.

The retrospective is completed on the ground floor by documents – including films, exhibition catalogues, invitations, posters and archival photographs – that trace Kounellis’ exhibition history, and by a focus on his theater projects. The exhibition is accompanied by a volume that includes an essay by Germano Celant and an extensive illustrated chronology, documenting and exploring Jannis Kounellis’ artistic career and biography. Designed by 2×4 (New York), the book is published by Fondazione Prada.


News source: Fondazione Prada Venice
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“Plečnik and the Sacred” at Musei Vaticani

The contents of the “Plečnik and the Sacred” exhibition were elaborated by the expert of the work of Plečnik Peter Krečič, who collaborated with the curator of the House of Plečnik Ana Porok. The exhibition is introduced by some texts that illustrate to visitors the context in which the creation of Plečnik’s sacred buildings and reproductions of projects for some of his selected sacred furnishings are placed.


Jože Plečnik


On Thursday 27 June 2019 the Plečnik and the Sacred exhibition was inaugurated at the Vatican Museums. Jože Plečnik, Slovenian architect and designer, in which from 28 June to 7 September 2019 a selection of thirty-three precious liturgical furnishings made by the Slovenian architect Jože Plečnik (1872-1957) is presented for the first time in the Vatican.


“Plečnik and the Sacred”
28 June – 7 September, 2019
Musei Vaticani
Viale Vaticano, 00165 Roma


Barbara Jatta, Director of the Vatican Museums, welcomed the idea of ​​presenting Plečnik’s sacred work in the Vatican with great enthusiasm: “The Vatican Museums are pleased to host in the heart of the Pinacoteca Vaticana a significant exhibition of sacred furnishings by Jože Plečnik, a great architect and designer of the twentieth century, who created an original and innovative style both in religious and civil architecture and in the field of liturgical furniture, creating works of remarkable value that we wanted to share with our audience. ”


Jože Plečnik (1872-1957). Part of the exterior of the Churc of the Sacred Heart of Jesus in Prague, 1928-1932.

Jože Plečnik (1872-1957). Part of the exterior of the Churc of the Sacred Heart of Jesus in Prague, 1928-1932.


Jože Plečnik is the first Slovenian artist to whom it is dedicated an exhibition in the Vatican Museums. The theme of the creation of sacred furnishings in the work of contemporary architects and designers is quite exceptional and in this field Plečnik has created something unique in the world, both in quantitative and qualitative terms. On the occasion of the exhibition, a very careful selection of goblets, monstrances, ciboriums and liturgical cases is set up in Room XVII of the Pinacoteca Vaticana, where works by famous authors from all over the world are exhibited, from Giotto to Raphael, from Leonardo to Tiziano and others . This initiative represents one of the most important projects for the promotion of culture Slovenian in the year 2019.


Jože Plečnik (1872-1957). Three bridges.

Jože Plečnik (1872-1957). Three bridges.

Jože Plečnik (1872-1957). Church of St Michael in Crna Vas, Ljubljana, 1937-1938.

Jože Plečnik (1872-1957). Church of St Michael in Crna Vas, Ljubljana, 1937-1938.


The Plečnik and the Sacred exhibition, which emphasizes that the Slovenian architect Jože Plečnik was not only a master of monumental architecture, but also an exceptional creator of sacred furnishings, was created by the Vatican Museums and the Museum and Galleries of the City of Ljubljana (MGML) in close collaboration with the Embassy of the Republic of Slovenia to the Holy See and with the support of the Ministry of the Republic of Slovenia for Culture and the Archdiocese of Ljubljana.


Jože Plečnik (1872-1957) . Obelisk on the moravian Bastion, Prague castle, 1922-1923

Jože Plečnik (1872-1957) . Obelisk on the moravian Bastion, Prague castle, 1922-1923


The creator of the exhibition is Blaž Peršin, Director of the Museum and Galleries of the City of Ljubljana, who highlighted: “We are convinced that the exhibition will contribute to making Plečnik’s work better known worldwide and that, during this summer period , its openness to the thousands of visitors to the Vatican Museums will substantially contribute to the promotion of Slovenia. Precisely the liturgical vessels represent the pinnacle of Plečnik’s artistic creation, masterpieces of art of his creative spirit. ”


Jože Plečnik (1872-1957). The Parliament of slovenia, model, 1949.

Jože Plečnik (1872-1957). The Parliament of slovenia, model, 1949.

Jože Plečnik (1872-1957). Staircase of the Langer Apartment House in Vienna, 1901-1902.

Jože Plečnik (1872-1957). Staircase of the Langer Apartment House in Vienna, 1901-1902.


With the Plečnik and the Sacred exhibition, the long-standing desire of the Ambassador of the Republic of Slovenia to the Holy See, His Excellency Tomaž Kunstelj, was finally fulfilled, who made a considerable effort to present the Slovenian cultural heritage in the Vatican museums. “Among the Slovenian minds, who with their work in the field of Central European architecture and design have been able to fully implement the richness of their talent, enriching it with hard work and a great deal of personal spirituality, Joze Plečnik surely excels. If someone has the right to access the Vatican Museums, this is definitely Plečnik, who has designed numerous churches, their interiors and sacred furnishings. The Embassy of the Republic of Slovenia is honored to have collaborated with the Vatican Museums and the dynamic creative team of the Museum and Galleries of the City of Ljubljana and to have received the financial contribution from the Ministry of Culture in order to contribute to affixing an important card in the mosaic of the Plečnik exhibition in the Vatican. ”


Jože Plečnik (1872-1957). Church os st Francis in Ljubljana, 1925-1927.

Jože Plečnik (1872-1957). Church os st Francis in Ljubljana, 1925-1927.


The main and certainly most attractive part of the exhibition are the thirty-three original sacred furnishings, which represent the most beautiful examples of Plečnik’s rich work. Thanks also to the intervention of the Archdiocese of Ljubljana, these furnishings were loaned by the curators of the sacred heritage of various churches, monasteries and private individuals.

The exhibition also includes a video on Plečnik’s sacred architecture created by Tone Stojko, with which he highlights the importance of the entire religious work of the Slovenian master. In the video visitors will be able to admire the sacred architecture of Plečnik: the Church of St. Michael, the Church of St. Francis of Assisi and the Žale monumental complex in Ljubljana, as well as the Church of the Sacred Heart of Jesus in Prague.


News source: Musei Vaticani
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“Les Tours de Babel” at Azay-le-Rideau

Presented in the exhibition hall Les Halles, the exhibition brings together more than 40 works and projects of experimental architecture in the form of models, drawings, collages, films on 180 m2.


Delirius NY © Frac Centre Val de Loire


From June 28 to December 22, 2019, the city of Azay-le-Rideau is organizing the exhibition Babel’s Towers designed by the Regional Contemporary Art Fund of the Center-Val de Loire region. Presented in the exhibition hall Les Halles, the exhibition brings together more than 40 works and projects of experimental architecture in the form of models, drawings, collages, films on 180 m2. (more…)

“Giovanni Battista Piranesi” at the National Library of Spain

The study and reasoned cataloging of the very rich collection of prints and books by Giovanni Battista Piranesi (Venice 1720-Rome 1778) conserved in the National Library of Spain, as well as a beautiful drawing for his Carceri series, is the aim of this exhibition.


Piramide di C Cestio © BNE


Since, in 1936, Enrique Lafuente Ferrari made the first and only inventory-catalog reasoned Piranesi fund in the BNE, with some subsequent reprint, has not returned to study one of the sets of books and prints to the most important etching that exist of the Venetian architect, engraver and theoretician. (more…)