CLAD people

Yvonne Farrell and Shelley McNamara

Curators 2018 Venice Architecture Biennale


The creation of vibrant and meaningful public spaces will be the focus of the 2018 Venice Architecture Biennale, curators Yvonne Farrell and Shelley McNamara have revealed.

The duo announced that the 16th International Architecture Exhibition is to be themed ‘Freespace’ and will “celebrate architecture’s proven and enduring contribution to humanity.”

Explaining the concept, they said: “We’re interested in going beyond the visual, emphasising the role of architecture in the choreography of daily life.

“We believe that everyone has the right to benefit from architecture. The role of architecture is to give shelter to our bodies and to lift our spirits. A beautiful wall forming a street edge gives pleasure to the passer-by, even if they never go inside. So too does a glimpse into a courtyard through an archway; or a place to lean against in the shade or a recess which offers protection from the wind and rain.

“We see the earth as client. This brings with it long-lasting responsibilities. Architecture is the play of light, sun, shade, moon, air, wind, gravity in ways that reveal the mysteries of the world. All of these resources are free and examples of generosity and thoughtfulness in architecture throughout the world will be celebrated [at the Biennale].

We believe these qualities sustain the fundamental capacity of architecture to nurture and support meaningful contact between people and place.

“We focus our attention on these qualities because we consider that intrinsic to them are optimism and continuity. Architecture that embodies these qualities and does so with generosity and a desire for exchange is what we call Freespace.”

Paolo Baratta, president of the Biennale, added: “The divide between architecture and civil society, caused by the latter’s increasing difficulty in expressing its own needs and finding appropriate answers, has led to dramatic urban developments whose main feature is the marked absence of public spaces, or the growth of other areas dominated by indifference in the suburbs and peripheries of our cities.

“The absence of architecture makes the world poorer and diminishes the level of public welfare, otherwise reached by economic and demographic developments. To rediscover architecture means to renew a strong desire for the quality of the spaces where we live, which are a form of public wealth that needs to be constantly protected, renovated and created.”

As usual, the Biennale will present national pavilions reflecting on the main theme, which will be located at Venice’s Giardini, Arsenale, and in the historic city centre.

The festival – one of the most important in the architectural calendar – will run from 26 May to 25 November 2018.

Farrell and McNamara are co-founders of Irish practice Grafton Architects; winners in 2016 of the inaugural RIBA International Prize for the UTEC University campus in Lima, Peru. They follow in the footsteps of Chilean architect Alejandro Aravena, who explored the relationship between architecture and civil society in his 2016 Venice Biennale.

Gallery
Click on an image to open the image gallery
company profile
Company profile: Willmott Dixon
Willmott Dixon delivers the social infrastructure that people depend on in their daily lives. We partner with our customers to focus on the services they want to provide, not just the building we construct, and we are committed to achieving a higher social purpose through our work.
Try cladmag for free!
Sign up with CLAD to receive our regular ezine, instant news alerts, free digital subscriptions to CLADweek, CLADmag and CLADbook and to request a free sample of the next issue of CLADmag.
sign up
features
The competition to design the Parklands was launched by the Presidio Trust
James Corner
"Landscape is something personally experienced, almost subconsciously"

Landscape architects are the unsung heroes shaping our public realm, says the High Line designer

Mahdavi designed pastel interiors for the recently opened Laduree store and cafe in Tokyo
After working for Christian Liaigre in Paris, Mahdavi launched her practice in 1999
"I never thought it was a talent. I just did it very naturally, without thinking"

The ‘queen of colour’ on her nomadic childhood, being fearless and choosing the exact right shade of pink for the Sketch Gallery restaurant

Stefano Boeri is working on a number of major green schemes in China
Stefano Boeri is working on a number of major green schemes in China
"We’re creating new spheres, where people, trees and animals can coexist in an environment of wellness"

On how the vertical forest model promotes wellness

Catalogue Gallery
Click on a catalogue to view it online
To advertise in our catalogue gallery: call +44(0)1462 431385
features
Bertil Harström
"You could have cultural events and museums that go from city to city. It’s a new way of thinking"

Rising sea levels and a shortage of land are leading to increased interest in floating buildings. We take a look at some fascinating projects

Feature: The exciting new materials shaping the built environment
"Curiosity drives us and I think we all have a little bit of the geek within us"

The innovative new materials shaping the future of architecture

Interview: Francine Houben on redesigning the iconic New York Public Library
Francine Houben
"Looking back, I recognise the coherence of the work we’ve done"

As she works on the renovation of the New York Public Library, Mecanoo’s creative director talks inspiration, idealism and the advantages of getting older

Natural tones and materials were used throughout to create a calming atmosphere
"The key to a happy and successful society is a philosophy that places wellness at the heart of everything"

Calvin Tsao and brother Frederick are reviving the Chinese culture of physical and mental wellbeing with their Octave Living development company, as Christopher DeWolf discovers

cladkit product news
Eden project uses drones to spell out climate change warning
Magali Robathan
Almost 300 drones were used to signal an environmental message above the Eden Project’s biomes, during the UN Climate Change ...
Siminetti unveils iridescent decorative panelling range inspired by plants
The Clematis design
Megan Whitby
The Botanicals is Siminetti’s newest Mother of Pearl decorative panelling collection, inspired by the distinctive patterns found in botany and ...
Mather & Co and ITV unite to create Coronation Street Experience
Mather & Co has transformed the visitor centre into the ultimate haven for ardent Coronation Street viewers
Magali Robathan
Experience designers, Mather & Co, have orchestrated a remarkable collaboration with ITV to unveil the new Coronation Street Experience, a ...
cladkit product news
Eco Resort Network conference to convene in Mauritius this May
The event will be hosted in the Mauritius in 2024
Megan Whitby
Hospitality industry event Eco Resort Network is set to take place at the Ravenala Attitude Hotel, Turtle Bay, Mauritius, from ...
Codelocks develops new glass door smart lock
The new lock model allows facilities and building managers to create and manage access via an app or online portal
Megan Whitby
Codelocks has launched its first glass door smart lock to bring intelligent access control to modern spa, leisure, fitness and ...
Alberto Apostoli designs tech-forward Wellness Therapy furniture collection for Varaschin
The furniture collection draws on absolute geometries, pure lines, neutral colours and strong references to nature
Megan Whitby
Furniture manufacturer Varaschin has unveiled the new Wellness Therapy range, designed by Italian spa and wellness architect and designer Alberto ...
cladkit product news
Alberto Apostoli and Newform collaborate to launch the A.Zeta showerhead
The showerhead offers two modes; rainfall or waterfall
Megan Whitby
Italian architect Alberto Apostoli has renewed his partnership with Newform – an Italian wellness company – and designed A.Zeta. A.Zeta ...
CSI Design Expo Americas 2024 announces new Attractions & Entertainment Technology Zone
The event will allow buyers and suppliers to meet
Magali Robathan
Cruise Ship Interiors (CSI) invites cruise lines, shipyards, design studios, outfitters, and suppliers to take part in CSI Design Expo ...
Koto Design introduces wood-fired hot tub
Koto is known for crafting modular, energy-neutral cabins and homes
Katie Barnes
A striking wood-fired hot tub has been unveiled by Koto, an architecture and design studio which has a passion for ...