La Biennale di Venezia, 29th August to 21st November 2010

Introduction by Kazuyo Sejima

The 2010 Architecture Biennale should be a reflection on architecture. The twenty-first century has just started. Many radical changes are taking place. In such a rapid-changing context, can architecture clarify new values and a new lifestyle for the present? Hopefully, this show will be a chance to experience the manifold possibilities of architecture, as well as to account for its plurality of approaches, each one of them being a different way of living.

Nowadays, it feels as if we are living in a post ideological society.
We are more connected than ever, our culture, as well as our economy, has become global. Because of this, people's consciousness and lifestyles change, theoretically and substantially. Sometimes relationships get shaped through indirect communication. Still, we believe that architecture plays a significant role in this: it has the power to open up new perspectives. We imagine ideas that can have far reaching effects. These dreams come from many sources and may represent a new independent freedom that is essentially inherent to contemporary culture.

In the end, we would be happy if, thanks to this exhibition, we could feel where our society might be going, what dreams the future might hold for us.

There will be an independent space for each participant, in order to make them show their understanding of the theme and their personal response to it. Individuals will be showing their position towards the interaction of new social and natural environments; all of which means that each person is his or her own curator. This way the atmosphere of the exhibition itself will be achieved through multiple points of view rather than a single orientation.

The selection criterion has led to architects, artists and engineers who, in return to this call, propose a way to investigate relationships among people. Each dynamic relationship has its roots in actual, physical space. Matthias Schuler of Transsolar, for instance, in collaboration with Tetsuo Kondo, has proposed a real scale cloud. It is an installation that forces people into a new reading of space simply because its edges are ephemeral. Other projects do not necessarily display an overt original style, whereas some others are clearly at the very edge of technology. R&Sie(n) are presenting an installation that represents human life cycles through projected lights, which speaks about how we ultimately perceive space. Further on, we have invited many architects to study their own work in fims that will be shown in an attempt to examine how people make space what it is by living in it. In this exhibition Architecture can be shown as a generator of new forms of understanding.

The idea is to help people relate to architecture, to help architecture relate to people, and to help people relate to themselves.

Visitors can have different reactions towards each installation. The Palazzo delle Esposizioni and the Arsenale are treated similarly, both opened up to natural light although the work is deeply varied, making it possible for everyone to make their unique route through displays freely. By experiencing architecture from different angles, people will be able to start creating their own personal "set of encounters".