Habitat Metropole, exhibitions and activities to track down Paris’ urban housing

This spring’s programme of Pavillon de l’Arsenal include an exhibition on “Paris Habitat”, the city’s office of public housing, and “Paysages Habités” a display of 137 contrasting examples of Paris’ evolving housing.


Habitat Metropole © Antoine Espinasseau

Habitat Metropole © Antoine Espinasseau


From February 12, 2015 Pavillon de l’Arsenal in Paris will be host to an exhibition on the evolution of the city of Paris over the last century. Created in collaboration with the University of Versailles, the exhibition is composed of photographs, plans and drawings, and an impressive display of  an over 120 square-meter scale model representing the diversity of urban housing in the city.

Called “Habitat Metropole“, the activities programmed by Pavillon de l’Arsenal include not just exhibitions, but also a series of conferences and debates, guided tours around Paris, workshops and activities for families and children for a more dynamic and educational approach to understanding the changes undergone in the city’s buildings and Parisian’s way of life. (more…)

“Luigi Pellegrin: Architectural Visions of Pisa”, standing up for Italian post-war architecture

Following Pisa’s local administration’s desire to take down one of the city’s most representative building of 1960’s organic architecture, the Complesso Concetto Marchesi, Pisastudium have launched an exhibition and congress on its author’s life and works.


© Chandra Editrice. Image from the book "Scuola Marchesi di Pisa" edited by Chiara Cascella

© Chandra Editrice. Image from the book “Scuola Marchesi di Pisa” edited by Chiara Cascella


Pisastudium, a local cultural association in Pisa, have just launched an exhibition on the life and works of one of Italy’s most important architect’s and designer’s: Luigi Pellegrin. However, Pellegrin is specially known in Pisa for what is considered one of the highest examples of Italian post-war architecture, the Scuola Marchesi, which was recently subject of controversy after the local administration’s desire to bring it down.

The aim of “Luigi Pellegrin: Architectural Visions of Pisa” is to promote a fresh, unprejudiced point of view on Pisa’s architectural heritage beyond the Camposanto and to ackowledge the work of one of the key figures of Italian organic architecture.



Three “Mysterious Objects” by Gio Ponti, the new inhabitants of Milano Malpensa

Porta di Milano, a recently inaugurated art showroom in Malpensa Airport, displays three works by the Italian architect and designer until the 31st of March. Passengers will be able to visit these works in an unusual way -as part of a non-contemplative, travelling experience.

Gio Ponti, flooring design for the  Salzburger Nachrichten. © Gio Ponti Archives

Gio Ponti, flooring design for the Salzburger Nachrichten. © Gio Ponti Archives


“Porta di Milano”, in Malpensa Airport, Terminal 1, is hosting an exhibition on Gio Ponti until the 31st of March. Inaugurated last October, the exhibition shows three works by the renowned Italian architect and designer: the Espressioni installation for the Ideal Standard Showroom in Milan (1966), the Cathedral of Los Angeles (1967), and  the flooring design for the Salzburger Nachrichten in Salzburg (1976) – considered by some as the ideas that over time led to masterpieces such as the Cathedral of Taranto or the Museum in Denver.



“In a Dawn all Charms Decay” by Isidoro Valcárcel Medina at Musac León

The varied and heterogeneous graphic materials compiled are displayed alongside the plans drawn by the artist in 1991. Both the former exhibition at Tráfico de Arte Gallery in 1991 as well as the new show at MUSAC lay bare, among other issues, the pressing need to create critical spaces from where to think and rethink community life, the uses of public space and the urban development.


In a Dawn All Charms Decay. Courtesy by MUSAC

In a Dawn All Charms Decay. Courtesy of MUSAC


The National Prize of Plastic Arts 2007 , has created for the MUSAC in León, Spain, a project called “In a Dawn all Charms Decay”, a sort of “premature urbanization” comprising a series of drawings and documents created over twenty years ago. Made in collaboration with “Agencia de desmontaje”, the work is based on “Sugerencias de un forastero al plan general de León” (An outsider’s suggestions for León’s urban plan), which was presented in 1991 at an art gallery, “Tráfico de Arte”.

“At that moment I imagined the land where the Musac is right now as an amusement park and a wind museum, with a platform-fan so that visitors’ clothes were lifted, as the famous Marilyn Monroe image. I also devised a football field with transparent screens in the football locker for players and television equipped rooms where the referee’s whistle the game.”

On the “before” and “after” he says: “It’s the change of all the cities we know, set in virgin or clearly improbable locations, but then the political or private interests enter and … everything changes for the worse.” Valcárcel Medina proposes new types of distribution or receipt for his art, as happened a century ago with Dada, micromedia in which the spectator is also the protagonist. “This is teasing you and forcing you to become a bit coauthor”. (more…)

“Big Change / Big Chance”: Africa’s opportunities for the new century, now showing at CIVA Brussels.

The exhibition, made for the Triennale di Milano, will be open until March 1, 2015. Its aim is to approach the continent’s potential through a comprehensive analysis of its landscape, infrastructures and urban development posibilities.


Nouackchott, Mauritanie. Photograph by Jerôme Chenal

Nouackchott, Mauritanie. Photograph by Jerôme Chenal


After its presentation at the Milan Triennale from 15 October to 28 December 2014 , CIVA is pleased to welcome  Africa: Big Change / Big Chance , a richly illustrated and commented exhibition reviewing the architectural and urban situation of an ever-changing continent.

The exhibition aims to address the complex panorama of Africa from an architectural point of view in a context of scarce natural resources and growing urbanization. It will be open until March 1, 2015.


“A History. Art, Architecture, Design from the 1980s until today” at Centre Pompidou

A History, a new presentation of the Centre Pompidou contemporary collections, proposes an interpretation of art inspired by the very way in which artists have positioned themselves in relation to the profound changes in the last thirty years.


Kengo Kuma, Model for the CG Prostho Museum Research Center, Kasugaishi, Japan, 2008-2010 Acrylic, 27.5 x 59.4 x 42 cm, scale 1/50, weight 5 kg musée national d’art moderne, Centre Pompidou, Paris © Centre Pompidou, mnam/cci

Kengo Kuma, Model for the CG Prostho Museum Research Center, Kasugaishi, Japan, 2008-2010 Acrylic, 27.5 x 59.4 x 42 cm, scale 1/50, weight 5 kg musée national d’art moderne, Centre Pompidou, Paris © Centre Pompidou, mnam/cci

The new presentation of the contemporary collections of the Centre Pompidou, provides an overview of contemporary art since the Eighties through a circuit of almost 400 works and objects by nearly 200 artists, architects and designers. With paintings, sculptures, installations, videos, films, drawings, photographs, architecture and design, this new presentation offers a new approach to the art of the last thirty years.


Challenging spatial awareness and perception: Musings on a Glass Box, a work by Diller Scofidio + Renfro.

Diller Scofidio + Renfro’s homage to Fondation Cartier is coming to an end. The multidisciplinary team’s installation designed on the occasion of the Fondation’s 30th anniversary will be closing on February 22. Called Musings on a Glass Box, it is a thought-provoking installation using transparency, sound effects and the spatial qualities of the building itself as raw materials for the work.


View of the Musings on a Glass Box exhibition Diller Scofidio+Renfro en collaboration avec David Lang et Jody Elff, 2014. © Luc Boegly

View of the Musings on a Glass Box exhibition Diller Scofidio+Renfro en collaboration avec David Lang et Jody Elff, 2014. © Luc Boegly

View of the Musings on a Glass Box exhibition
Diller Scofidio+Renfro en collaboration avec David Lang et Jody Elff, 2014. © Luc Boegly


Paris-based Fondation Cartier pour l’art contemporain is celebrating its 30th anniversary as a sponsor for contemporary arts with an exceptional project by the critically acclaimed team of artists and designers Diller Scofidio + Renfro.

From October 25, 2014 the entire ground floor of the Fondation Cartier has been taken over by Musings on a Glass Box, a new installation created especially for the occasion.  Designed in collaboration with American composer David Lang and sound designer Jody Elff, this work is the first to be showcased by the Fondation in which the building’s architecture itself is used as a raw material for the installation. Designed in 1994 by French architect Jean Nouvel, the iconic building in Boulevard Raspail in Paris is famous for its oversized glass façades that enclose the surrounding garden, creating an unclear, diffuse limit between the building and the street.  Taking advantage of the Fondation’s unique architecture, the installation by Diller Scofidio + Renfro portrays this empty space as the holder of many unexpected qualities only by the addition of a series of small gestures in the facilities. (more…)

Xaveer De Geyter “XDGA_160 EXPO” at Casa dell’Architettura in Rome

This exhibition presents ‘material evidence’ of the reality of XDGA, while at the same time embodying the working ethic of the office. It displays and documents built projects, urban studies and competition entries. In the exhibition, not the text nor the concept is preeminent – but the plan, the image and the model.


Silos-Tweewaters © XDGA
Silos-Tweewaters model © XDGA


The exhibition “XDGA_160 EXPO” will be open from February 18 and will run until  March 17 at “Casa dell’Architettura” in Rome. As inaugurating event Xaveer De Geyter will give a lecture at the venue this next Wednesday at 17.30 pm (free access) with the attendance of the co-curator Federico Matteis and Luca Garofalo, architect. (more…)

“Chillida, between the shapes”, a comprehensive exhibition in Roca Barcelona Gallery

The exhibition attempts to show the Spanish artist’s body of work through an organized collection of different scale artpieces, manuscripts and photographs.


Lurra 17 (1978), baked clay sculpture.

Lurra 17 (1978), baked clay sculpture.


The work of Eduardo Chillida (1924 – 2002), the internationally acclaimed Spanish artist, will be on display in Roca Barcelona Gallery from 21 January to 2 May 2015.  The exhibition showcases an assortment of different artpiececes and projects, personal manuscripts, small-scale sculptures and photographs in a more personal approach to the Spanish artist, who called himself “architect of the void”.



“Architecture in uniform”, an exhibition on building design during World War II, now in Rome.

The exhibition, curated by the Canadian Centre for Architecture in Montreal, has been specially adapted by MAXXI Rome to focus on Italy’s planning activities that led to the post-war period construction boom.


The MERO system, example of possible structures, 1943. Page from Max Mengeringhausen, Raumfachwerke aus Stäben und Knoten, 1975. Private collection.

The MERO system, example of possible structures, 1943. Page from Max Mengeringhausen, Raumfachwerke aus Stäben und Knoten, 1975. Private collection.


The Roman Museum of the Arts in the Twenty-first century  is holding an exhibition on construction planning and building development and research during the Second World War. This exhibition, named “Architecture in Uniform. Designing and building for the second world war” will be open until May 3rd 2015.