Thursday, August 30, 2012

VENICE: - 13th International Architecture Biennale – AWARDS

VENICE: - 13th International Architecture Biennale – AWARDS: The awards ceremony of the 13th International Architecture Biennale took place today. The Board of la Biennale di Venezia, chaired by Paolo Baratta, also awarded Golden Lions for Lifetime Achievement under director David Chipperfield’s proposal to, Álvaro Siza Vieira.

Golden Lion for the Best National Participation – Japan.  The Golden Lion for the Best National Participation, which captures the spirit of Common Ground, is awarded to the Japanese Pavilion in which leading international architect Toyo Ito (above) collaborated with younger architects and with the local community to address in a practical and imaginative way the design of a new centre for a region devastated by a national disaster. The presentation and the storytelling in the Pavilion are exceptional and highly accessible to a broad audience. The jury was impressed with the humanity of this project.

Golden Lion for the Best Project - Urban Think Tank. The Golden Lion for the Best Project embodying the theme of Common Ground goes to Torre David / Gran Horizonte by Urban-Think Tank (Alfredo Brillembourg, Hubert Klumpner) and Justin McGuirk and to the people of Caracas and their families who created a new community and a home out of an abandoned and unfinished building.  The jury praised the architects for recognizing the power of this transformational project. An informal community created a new home and a new identity by occupying Torre David (above) and did so with flair and conviction. This initiative can be seen as an inspirational model acknowledging the strength of informal societies.
Above: Alfredo Brillembourg and Hubert Klumpner.

Silver Lion for a promising practice - Grafton Architects. The Silver Lion is awarded to Grafton Architects (Yvonne Farrell and Shelley McNamara) as a promising and emerging practice. For their impressive presentation of a new university campus in Lima, connecting to the ideas of Paulo Mendes da Rocha. The jury believes that the conceptual and spatial qualities of this installation demonstrate the considerable potential of this architectural practice in reimagining the urban landscape.

Special Mention - United States of America. A Special Mention goes to the United States of America for ‘Spontaneous Interventions: Design Actions for the Common Good’. This interactive installation impressed the Jury with its celebration of the power of individuals to change society in small but effective ways. The unpretentiously simple presentation was a delight.

Special Mention – Russia. A Special Mention goes to Russia for ‘i-city’. The ‘i-city’ takes a dialectic approach to Russia’s past, present and future and in the process turns us all into digital spies. The jury was drawn into this magical mystery tour and beguiled by its visual presentation. 

Special Mention – Cino Zucchi. A Special Mention goes to Cino Zucchi’s Copycat. Empatia e invidia come generatori di forma, 2012, an installation which ‘aims to evoke a complex network of relationships that shape our physical environment’. The jury believes that this serves as an exemplary reminder of the all-embracing theme of the Common Ground Exhibition.

CONTESSANALLY NOTE: An extensive coverage of the 13th Biennale of Architecture will follow after the Venice Film Festival and art exhibition posts in the near future.
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