“2018 Venice Biennale Reveals Further Details About This Year’s Theme, “Freespace

At a press conference earlier today, curators of the 2018 Venice Biennale Yvonne Farrell and Shelley McNamara of Grafton Architects revealed more information about this year’s upcoming event, to be hosted from May 26th to November 25th. Building on the thematic concept the duo presented last June—“Freespace”—the event will feature a main exhibition in the Central Pavilion of the Giardini and the Arsenale featuring work by 71 participants, while two Special Sections will feature a total of 29 further participants. Elsewhere, 65 national pavilions will present contributions from around the world, including 7 first-time participants: Antigua & Barbuda, Saudi Arabia, Guatemala, Lebanon, Mongolia, Pakistan and the Holy See.

Biennale President Paolo Baratta commented on the theme:

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2018 Venice Biennale Reveals Further Details About This Year’s Theme, “Freespace”

2018 Venice Biennale Reveals Further Details About This Year’s Theme, “Freespace”

10:03 – 2 March, 2018 by Rory Stott

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 2018 Venice Biennale Reveals Further Details About This Year’s Theme, “Freespace”, © Andrea Avezzu. Image Courtesy of La Biennale di Venezia © Andrea Avezzu. Image Courtesy of La Biennale di Venezia

At a press conference earlier today, curators of the 2018 Venice Biennale Yvonne Farrell and Shelley McNamara of Grafton Architects revealed more information about this year’s upcoming event, to be hosted from May 26th to November 25th. Building on the thematic concept the duo presented last June—“Freespace”—the event will feature a main exhibition in the Central Pavilion of the Giardini and the Arsenale featuring work by 71 participants, while two Special Sections will feature a total of 29 further participants. Elsewhere, 65 national pavilions will present contributions from around the world, including 7 first-time participants: Antigua & Barbuda, Saudi Arabia, Guatemala, Lebanon, Mongolia, Pakistan and the Holy See.

Biennale President Paolo Baratta commented on the theme:

The desire to create FREESPACE can become the specific individual characteristic of each individual project. But space, free space, public space can also reveal the presence or absence of architecture, if we understand architecture to be ‘thinking applied to the space where we live, that we inhabit.’ And the International Architecture Exhibition will offer us examples, teachings, and topics of discussion. Therefore, we are thankful to Farrell and McNamara for having accepted our invitation and for the choice, which adds an important link to the chain of Exhibitions held over the years.

The Special Sections will be titled “Close Encounter, meetings with remarkable projects,” presenting works that were inspired by a reflection on famous historical buildings, and “The Practice of Teaching,” presenting projects developed as part of a variety of teaching experiences. The two sections will feature 16 and 13 participants, respectively.

Further, two special projects will be presented:

The Forte Marghera Special Project in Mestre, an installation by Sami Rintala and Dagur Eggertsson will be built to host a series of events scheduled in Forte Marghera.

The Special Project at the Applied Arts Pavilion in the Sale d’Armi in the Arsenale, which will present a fragment of the Robin Hood Gardens social housing estate, which was acquired by the Victoria & Albert museum in late 2017. In a continuation of the Venice Biennale’s collaboration with the V&A museum, the fragment of the building will form part of an exhibition curated by Christopher Turner and Olivia Horsfall Turner.

Finally, related events will be held throughout the Biennale period, including “Meetings on Architecture,” in which participants will get the opportunity to discuss different interpretations of the “Freespace” manifesto.