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Pavilion of Turkey presents "Architecture as Measure" exploring architecture's relation to the world
Italy Architecture News - Jun 15, 2021 - 12:28 1716 views
The Pavilion of Turkey has installed an exhibition that each of room becomes an architectural model itself at this year's Venice Architecture Biennale which opened to the public on May 22 in Venice, Italy.
Titled Architecture As Measure, the exhibition, curated by Neyran Turan - founder of NEMESTUDIO, helps to understand architecture's role relation to the world, "more of an agent rather than a mere respondent."
In response to Hashim Sarkis' theme "How Will We Live Together?", Turan sets her theme based on her recently-published book Architecture as Measure by Actar Publishers in 2020 as "a theoretical preamble".
In this sense, the exhibition positions architecture as a measure that can help assess our place on Earth and our role in relation to those with whom we live together: as architects with the actors of other disciplines and domains of work, and as a species alongside more-than-human others.
The exhibition is curated by Neyran Turan, who is Associate Professor at the Department of Architecture at the University of California-Berkeley, alongside Assistant curators E. Ece Emanetoğlu, Melis Uğurlu, Betsy Clifton, and Samet Mor.
Located at Sale d’Armi, Arsenale, one of the main venues of the Biennale, the exhibition is presented through a yellow-colored installation, an online publication, and storytelling.
Architecture as Measure focuses on the politics and nuances of the seemingly mundane aspects and sites of architectural construction, juxtaposing them with their planetary counterparts through geographies of resource extraction, material supply chains, maintenance and care in Turkey and beyond.
Designed by Turan's studio NEMESTUDIO, the exhibition, entitled Four Dioramas, comprises a quartet of rooms: Diorama of Quarry, Diorama of Logistics, Diorama of Maintenance and Care and Diorama of Formwork.
Each diorama stages both a generic site of architecture with banal details and a specific mise-en-scène of an imaginary story taking place in Turkey.
Diorama of Quarry explores a marble quarry abandoned after centuries of resource extraction in the old land, while Diorama of Logistics is a large warehouse enabling a massive transit during a multi-species migration to a new land.
Another room is Diorama of Maintenance and Care, which elaborates a site of repair in the new land, where both the built structures and the endangered more-than-human beings are continually given maintenance and care.
Lastly, Diorama of Formwork looks at a site of reconstruction for the future inhabitants of the Earth.
Visitors can walk inside the dioramas as if they are in the interior space of an architectural model.
As the dioramas collide the architectural and the planetary, the human and the more-than-human, the banal and the spectacular, and the everyday and the mythical, ideas of foreground and background are constantly flipped and negotiated.
"When we started working on the project in 2019, we were not aware of the process in front of us because of the pandemic. The extension of the project over such a long period of time gave us a chance to reflect on the premise of the project and its relevance," said the curator Neyran Turan.
"We are happy to be able to share our project with the visitors and our wider audience today. Our project aims to rethink architecture’s relation to the world, in which it is more of an agent than a mere respondent," she continued.
"The pandemic has drastically changed the way we relate to our environment and one another and made more apparent and visible the problems that were already there before."
"In that sense, we hope that our project, which we see as a series of platforms that can provide different encounters, will lead to the kind of dialogues we aspire to and enable other discussions in the future," Turan added.
In addition to the installation, the exhibition has launched a website as its main publication platform. The official website explores topics of focus through four different formats—Paperwork, Episodes, Conversations, and Essays—the website presents content written by the Pavilion’s curatorial team and the invited contributors, published periodically over the course of the biennial.
The dioramas in the pavilion showcase selected published pamphlets from the website publication, where they become part of the mise-en-scènes of the stories depicted.
"The Istanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts has been working since March 2020 to ensure the continuation of artistic production during the pandemic and the sustainability of our contributions to culture and the arts. In collaboration with diverse institutions, we are using new methods to expand access to art," said İKSV Chairman Bülent Eczacıbaşı.
"We earnestly believe that culture and art make us stronger in times of adversity because they nourish our intellect and remind us that, whatever the situation, we are part of a universal whole."
Visitors can dive into the exhibition on IKSV's Youtube channel.
Architecture as Measure is curated by Neyran Turan. Assistant curators are E. Ece Emanetoğlu, Melis Uğurlu, Betsy Clifton, and Samet Mor.
The editorial assistant is Ian Erickson. Visual identity and graphic design are designed by Paleworks (Yağmur Ruzgar and Ozan Akkoyun).
The Pavilion of Turkey is coordinated by the Istanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts (IKSV), co-sponsored by Schüco Turkey and VitrA, and realised with the contribution of the Ministry of Culture and Tourism under the auspices of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Turkey.
The 17th International Architecture Exhibition in Venice has opened to the public on 22 May 2021. The exhibition will be on view till 21 November 2021.
This year’s architecture biennale is themed as "How will we live together?" by the curator Hashim Sarkis, the theme explores a widening context that helps architects to "imagine spaces in which we can generously live together".
We invite our readers to find out WAC's detailed coverage about the 2021 Venice Architecture Biennale on our Italy page.
All images © RMphotostudio.
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