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Tallinn Architecture Biennale 2022 will explore "Edible; Or, The Architecture of Metabolism"

Estonia Architecture News - Jul 22, 2022 - 11:32   2700 views

Tallinn Architecture Biennale 2022 will explore

The 6th Tallinn Architecture Biennale will open its doors on September 7th, 2022 in multiple venues in the heart of Tallinn, Estonia with a vast programme conceived to foster dialogue, multidisciplinarity and experimentation. 

This year's biennale is themed as “Edible; Or, The Architecture of Metabolism” and the international architecture festival organised by the Estonian Centre for Architecture is curated by Lydia Kallipoliti and Areti Markopoulou, in collaboration with local advisor Ivan Sergejev and assistant curator Sonia Sobrino Ralston. 

TAB 2022 aims to empower architects, planners, and environmental designers to take a proactive stance on architecture’s expressive capacity to perform circular operations, to generate resources – food and energy – and to self-decompose.

Tallinn Architecture Biennale 2022 will explore

Architecture of Metabolism - Building infrastructures that produce resources and digest waste. Image © TAB 2022 curatorial team

Addressing both architects and the general public, the TAB 2022 Official Programme consists of five main events: a Curatorial Exhibition, a 2-days Symposium, a Vision Competition Exhibition, an Installation Programme and an International Architecture Schools' Exhibition. 

TAB 2022 will be accompanied by a Satellite Programme including various exhibitions, concerts, family events and much more.

Tallinn Architecture Biennale 2022 will explore

From Waste to Matter - Waste as construction material. Image © TAB 2022 curatorial team

Edible; Or, The Architecture of Metabolism

"Edible; Or, The Architecture of Metabolism" transfers the metabolism and experiential aptitudes of the natural world – like growth, decay, digestion, and nutrient release – to the domain of cities and buildings.

"With “Edible; Or, The Architecture of Metabolism”, we wish to question the extractive, consumptive and contaminating nature of the built environment and envision an architecture that produces resources, digests its waste and self-decomposes. Amidst the current crisis of public health, climate change and social inequality, it becomes evident that the fragility of our supply chains urges new forms of local sourcing and production," said curators Lydia Kallipoliti and Areti Markopoulou who invite audiences to reflect on food and architecture.

Tallinn Architecture Biennale 2022 will explore

Reinu Farm Kitchen. Image © Reinu talu köök, ERM Fk 2906:571, Eesti Rahva Muuseum

"TAB 2022 addresses “where our food comes from” as a creative design problem and raises questions on the aesthetic, cultural and experiential qualities of spaces as productive environments throughout their full lifecycles," the curatorial team added.

Tallinn Architecture Biennale 2022 will explore

Tallinn Bird Factory aviary, which can hold 6,000 chickens (1966). Haapsalu and Lääne County Museums Foundation. Image © Tallinn Bird Factory, which can hold 6,000 chickens., HM F 118: 283 Ff, Haapsalu and Lääne County Museums Foundation

Curatorial Exhibition

Entitled “EDIBLE”, the main objective of the Curatorial Exhibition is to reimagine planetary food systems along with architecture’s capacity to perform metabolic processes. The selected projects explore the principles of kinship, interspecies alliances, circularity, and localisation.

Tallinn Architecture Biennale 2022 will explore

Kurtna Experimental Poultry Station Laboratory (1960-1970). Image © Kurtna Linnukasvatuse Katsejaam. Laboratooriumis, EPM FP 290:23, Eesti Maaelumuuseumid SA, Eesti Põllumajandusmuuseum

Participants in the Curatorial Exhibition will be gathered in five thematic groups:

Metabolic Home converts the Estonian Museum of Architecture into a living machine and invites visitors to participate in a curated experiment. Each of the seven installations exhibit how metabolic processes related to food are linked to everyday domestic spaces and activities.

Projects: “Transspecies Kitchen” by Andrés Jaque - Office for Political Innovation with M-Marble Project (Spain/USA); “Everything on The Table” by Hayley Eber and Mae-ling Lokko (The Cooper Union, South Africa/USA/Ghana); “Robotic Urban Farms” by Cristian Rizzuti, Alexandre Dubor (Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia (IAAC), The Master in Robotics and Advanced Construction (MRAC), Spain); “The Friendship WC (Water Chandelier)” by Caroline O'Donnell (Ecological Action Lab, Cornell University, USA); “Edible Puffed Rice Clusters” by Mitchell Joachim and Vivian Kuan (Terreform ONE, USA); “Rock Bottom” by Allison Dring, Made of Air (Germany); “The Datša Wrap: Urban Crop Pockets” by Sille Pihlak and Siim Tuksam (PART, Estonia);

Tallinn Architecture Biennale 2022 will explore

Eat Me, Build Me by Sharon Yavo Ayalon and Lola Ben-Alon Using traditional adobe molds for the brick making process. Image © Sharon Yavo Ayalon & Lola Ben-Alon

From Brick to Soil questions the origin and lifecycle of our current building materials and showcases a collection of edible, upcycled, productive and compostable building prototypes and components.

Projects: “Eat Me, Build Me” by Lola Ben Alon and Sharon Yavo Ayalon (USA/Israel), “Yfaloid” by Iason Pantazis and Evangelos Pantazis (Topotheque Design Research Studio, Greece), “Building Calories” by Andreas Theodoridis and Christina Ciardullo (Greece/USA), “Synthetic Crystalliedron” by Claudia Pasquero and Marco Poletto (ecoLogicStudio, UK/Italy), “Metamatter” by Annika Kaldoja and Kärt Ojavee (Studio Aine, Estonia), “Interface Organism” by Siim Karro (Myceen, Estonia), “RootSkin: From Soil to Soil” by Chiara Farinea (Advanced Architecture Group, IAAC, Spain).

Tallinn Architecture Biennale 2022 will explore

RootSkin: From Soil to Soil by Chiara Farinea Detail of RootSkin membrane. Image © Advanced Architecture Group (AAG)

Food and Geopolitics engages with planetary phenomena and large-scale territories via maps, drawings, films and visualisations of mass migration and food sourcing in challenging environmental conditions and conflict zones.

Projects: “Black Almanac” by Philip Maughan (UK/Germany) and Andrea Provenzano (Italy/Norway), “Tallinna Aed” by Damiano Cerrone, Jesús López Baeza, Kristi Grišakov, Panu Lehtovuori (SPIN Unit, Estonia/Finland), “Unreserved: Land - Cycles” by Lola Sheppard, Mason White, Kearon Roy Taylor and James Bird (Lateral Office, Canada), “FATCONOMY: Of Material & Labour” by Robert Charles Johnson (UK), “Sowing Worlds”by Rania Ghosn and El Hadi Jazairy (Design Earth, USA), “Mountains and Valleys” by Anastasios Telios, Despoina Zavraka, Dimitrios Chatzinikolis, Georgios Grigoriadis (Greece).

Tallinn Architecture Biennale 2022 will explore

Sowing Worlds by Rania Ghosn and El Hadi Jazairy (DESIGN EARTH). “LifeStock” drawing. Image © DESIGN EARTH Sowing Worlds team

The Archaeology of Architecture and Food Systems displays an archive of radical, speculative projects that architects and artists have envisioned throughout the twentieth century. By Lydia Kallipoliti, Sonia Ralston and Sanjana Lahiri.

Finally, the Future Food Deal is an open library that exhibits manuals, cookbooks, as well as visionary drawings and manifestos, on how architecture may respond to the problem of alienation between people and their sources of food provisions in a time of increasing urbanization. Among the participants are Carlo Ratti, MIT Senseable City Lab; Vicente Guallart and Alex Hadley, IAAC; Winy Maas, TU Delft/The Why Factory; Enric Ruiz Geli and Aaron Betsky, Virginia Tech; Anna Puijaner, MAIO/Columbia University GSAPP.


During the Opening Week at the Cultural Hub of Tallinn, TAB will hold a two-day “EDIBLE” Symposium, which aims to generate genuine interdisciplinary debates. Participating speakers come from fields ranging from architecture to design, from textile technologies to economy. The list of key speakers includes Beatriz Colomina, Claudia Pasquero (ecoLogicStudio), Philippe Rahm (Philippe Rahm architectes), and many more. 

See the complete list of participants on this link

Tallinn Architecture Biennale 2022 will explore

From Waste to Matter - Waste as construction material. Image © TAB 2022 curatorial team

Vision Competition Exhibiton

The Vision Competition Exhibition will showcase a selection of 20 entries. Based on the main curatorial topic and entitled “Circular Block: Reinventing the Mikrorayon”, the competition examines the ability of architecture to convert waste into energy through recycling activities on both micro and macro scales, and focusing on Lasnamäe, the largest district in Tallinn. 

The winning project proposed a fundamental change to the living environment of Lasnamäe over a 40-year period which involves step–by–step demolition of the old buildings. The pace of the change will depend on the newly planted forest growth cycle.

Tallinn Architecture Biennale 2022 will explore

"Fungible Non-Fungible" project by IHEARTBLOB, winner of the 6th edition of TAB 2022 Installation Programme Competition. Image courtesy of IHEARTBLOB.

The pavilion “Fungible Non-Fungible” conceived and designed by iheartblob (Austria/UK/Estonia) will be the first ever blockchain-funded architecture initiative, and integrates architectural design, fabrication and funding in which the community are both designers and investors. 

Rather than designing architecture elements themselves, iheartblob have built a platform, a generative NFT tool in which individuals can design and “mint” - the process of creating and authenticating digital ownership - their own objects. 

To purchase their block, users will have to connect to their Tezos (XTZ) blockchain wallet. iheartblob is partnering with OBJKT.COM, the largest primary and secondary marketplace for Tezos NFTs. With “Fungible Non-Fungible” the architect becomes a system designer that empowers communities and enables local craftsmanship through the usage of blockchain, specifically the emergence of Non-Fungible Token (“NFT”), and Artificial Intelligence (“AI”). 

Tallinn Architecture Biennale 2022 will explore

Black Almanac by Philip Maughan and Andrea Provenzano Cooking with information. Image © Philip Maughan and Andrea Provenzano

International Architecture Schools Exhibition

Finally, “Handful” is the title chosen for the International Architecture Schools’ Exhibition, which includes the latest works by the students of the most prestigious academic institutions worldwide. 

The exhibition opening will be held on September 9th, 2022 in the garden of the Contemporary Art Museum of Estonia (EKKM).

Tallinn Architecture Biennale 2022 will explore

Greenhouse of Pärnu Nature House (2013), collected from Kodumaa picture competition (2015). Image © Pärnu Nature House Greenhouse, ERM Fk 2991: 139, Estonian National Museum

Tickets for TAB 2022 are now officially on sale at this link and include different perks. As an international event fostering peaceful and constructive dialogue in architecture, TAB 2022 will offer free passes to Ukrainian architects who wish to participate in the event. 

The complete programme of official and satellite events of TAB 2022 will be available on the official website in August 2022.

TAB 2022 facts

Curatorial Exhibition "EDIBLE"
Museum of Estonian Architecture
7 September — 20 November 2022

Installation Fungible Non-Fungible
Museum of Estonian Architecture (garden)
7 September — 2024

Symposium "EDIBLE"
Tallinn Creative Hub
7 — 8 September

Vision Competition Exhibition "Circular Block: Reinventing the Mikrorayon"
Tallinn Creative Hub
7 September —

International Architecture Schools Exhibition "Handful"
7 — 23 September 2022

Tallinn Architecture Biennale - TAB 2022:  "Edible; Or, The Architecture of Metabolism"
Opening Week: September 7th - 11th, 2022
Press preview: 4:30 PM, September 7th, 2022
Dates: September 7th - November 20th, 2022

Head Curators: Lydia Kallipoliti (Greece/USA) and Areti Markopoulou (Greece/Spain)
Local Advisor: Ivan Sergejev (Estonia)
Assistant Curator: Sonia Sobrino Ralston (USA)
Production: Eve Arpo, Anna Lindpere, Anu Lill (Estonian Centre for Architecture)
Curatorial Exhibition Production: Ronja Soopan
Installation project manager: Kati Valbet

Top image: Architecture of Metabolism - Building infrastructures that produce resources and digest waste. Image © TAB 2022 curatorial team. 

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