14/06/06 - 08/04 Venice Palazzo Michiel. The Bronks Youth Theatre Brussels
and the Canopy House Pajottenland
are featured in the exhibition MADE IN EUROPE
25 YEARS OF THE EUROPEAN UNION PRIZE - MIES VAN DER
ROHE AWARD, Collateral Event of the 14th International Architecture
Exhibition - la Biennale di Venezia - www.miesarch.com
Venice, June 2014_ The European Commission and the FundaciÃ³ Mies
van der Rohe present Made in Europeâ€, an exhibition tracing 25 years of
European architecture in the Palazzo Michiel from June 7th to August 4th,
coinciding with Biennale Architettura 2014.
This exhibition highlights the archives of the European Union Prize for
Contemporary Architecture â€“ Mies van der Rohe Award, begun in 1988.
It offers visitors a unique overview of the evolution of architecture in Europe
over the past 25 years. The archive, held by the FundaciÃ³ Mies van der Rohe
in Barcelona, is Europe's biggest collection of documents on contemporary
architecture, with more than 2,500 projects and 230 original models.
â€œ2013 marked the 25th anniversary of the Prize, and we decided to revisit the
archive, says Giovanna Carnevali, director of the Fundacia Mies van der
Rohe.This raw archive is physical evidence of time. It has the potential for
multiple interpretations: differenthistoriesâ€ are made possible, illustrating
the richness and the evolution of national architectures.â€
The Foundation offices are in the 1929 German Pavilion in Barcelona,
designed by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, demolished after the International
Exhibition and reconstructed on the original site in 1986. â€œThis reproduction
became a document itself, the "Zero Document". This is the origin of the
archive, which correspondingly consists of documents and reproductions that
help us analyse the past and imagine the future of architecture in Europe,â€
Visitors to the exhibition will discover how modern architecture over the last
century has eroded the singularities of each European nationâ€™s style. Can we
then still talk about national architecture? Moreover, is there a â€œEuropeannessâ€
in architecture? Is there a distinguishing feature in European
architecture beyond the fact that it is â€œMade in Europeâ€?
Although arranged thematically (collective housing, education, cultural
centres, etc.), the archive documents are exhibited without context. Viewed
together, they can provide many different answers to questions like: what
does collective housing mean? What are cultural centres? How are offices
designed? These answers, although diverse, share a common European
cultural definition of habitation and its application in architecture. They also
bring to light the complexity underlying the â€œMade in Europeâ€ concept.
The exhibition is divided into four areas: â€œModels,â€ â€œData,â€ â€œVoices,â€ and
Models. The first and second galleries contain a selection of 145 original
models by the Prize finalists. A timeline of the last 25 years in Europe also
highlights links between developments in politics, science, culture and
Data. This is the core of the exhibition: almost 2,500 projects by nominees
over the last 25 years of the European Prize. The project sketches construct
the space and shape a pathway through walls of file cards on a 25x25cm
grid, making the visitor experience the physical presence of architecture
â€œMade in Europeâ€. A QR code on each project is linked to the online
database, making the exhibition interactive, along with a dedicated Wi-Fi
connection to facilitate an up-to-date interpretation of contemporary
Making of. The production of the â€œMade in Europeâ€ exhibition was realised
by a group of 15 students from the Escola TÃ¨cnica Superior dâ€™Arquitectura
de Barcelona - Universitat PolitÃ¨cnica de Catalunya, whose intense work of
opening and revising all the projects in the archive has been full of surprises,
somewhat like Walter Benjamin unpacking his library.
The "Made in Europe" exhibition will host two symposia.
The first will be the â€œEuropean-ness porosityâ€ symposium on the same day
as the inauguration ceremony on June 6th. This forum will also be a
meeting point for the Commissioners of the different pavilions and previous
Prize winners. At the second symposium, in mid-July, past winners of the
Emerging Architects category of the Prize and other young and talented
architects will discuss the contemporary European architectural scene.