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Japan Pavilion presents Architectural Ethnography at the Venice Architecture Biennale

Italy - Jun 11, 2018 - 07:06   2037 views

The Pavilion of Japan has presented 42 projects ranging from university design studios, architectural offices to contemporary artistic practices from all over the world from the last twenty years at this year's Venice Architecture Biennale.

The Pavilion, curated by a team of Momoyo Kaijima, with Laurent Stalder and Yu Iseki, the exhibition is titled as "Architectural Ethnography" to reflect the search for a new approach in drawing—of, for, among, around—society.

The 2018 Venice Architecture Biennale is curated by the Irish architects Yvonne Farrell and Shelley McNamara under the title of Freespace.  In response to this year's Biennale, the curators created an extension of the project which Kaijima has been working on since the late 1990s. 

Through fieldwork and observations, Kaijima has been compiling people’s life and the reality of cities in a form of guidebook using architectural drawings as references. Capturing the realness of cities with keen and humorous point of view, the project questioned the nature of architecture from the perspective of its users and received a strong response in and outside of the country. 

Since then, in the last twenty years when our society made a remarkable change with the advance of informatization and globalization, a similar projects that followed her approach arose spontaneously across the world.

By collecting, showcasing works and architectural drawings around the world, whether influenced by her project or naturally occurred, and looking over them as "Architectual Ethnography", the exhibition aims to develop and deepen the discussion about life and architecture, the role of architecture: our society in the future.

"Life obviously exceeds architecture.What does this mean for architecture? How can the myriad situations that both feed into and result from the design of a building be effectively mapped? How does one address architectural drawings, not just as simple notational systems but as instruments to document, discuss, and evaluate architecture? How can they work to explore people’s actual usages, needs, and aspirations, and moreover to give shape to individualized life forms in today’s globalized society?," said the curators.

"The exhibition in the Japan Pavilion showcases a collection of forty-two projects from all over the world from the last twenty years, ranging from design specifications and spatial-activity charts, to maps of urban hybrids and large studies of rural farming and fishing villages following natural disasters, originating from university design studios, architectural offices, or artistic practices."

The exhibited works include ASSEMBLE with MarieJacotey, Oswald Adande, Yukio Miyashita, YAMAGUCHI Akira, Rural Urban Framework and Sony Devabhaktuni/The University of Hong Kong, Adam Frampton,Jonathan D.Solomon,Clara Wong, Drawing Architecture Studio and many more…

The 2018 Venice Architecture Biennale, curated by Yvonne Farrell and Shelley McNamara under the title of Freespace, will be on view from May 26th to November 25th, 2018 in the Giardini and the Arsenale, and around other venues in Venice.

All images ©︎ Andrea Sarti/CAST1466, photo coutesy of the Japan Foundation

> via Venice Architecture Biennale/Japan Foundation