Why is an Open Competition for the New Australian Venice Biennale Pavilion Important?
On 1 June 2011, at the 54th Venice Art Biennale, the Australia Council for the Arts announced plans for a new Australian pavilion in the Venice Giardini to replace the current pavilion designed by Philip Cox. A new pavilion is a great opportunity for Australian art and architecture. Unfortunately, the Australia Council “does not envisage a public competition.”
The final design should be the result of an architectural competition that is open to all Australian architects and artists.
An open competition will:
- Ensure the best functional and design outcome.
- Broaden public interest in Australia’s participation at the Venice Biennale.
- Engage the public in a conversation about what Australian art and architecture can offer an international audience.
- Provide a space for experimentation.
- Generate innovative, exciting and visionary outcomes.
- Allow for a broad range of responses.
- Explore the idea that the new pavilion is as much a cultural embassy as it is a functional pavilion. The new pavilion should not be seen a just a ‘shed’ to house Australian art and architecture but as an opportunity to showcase the best of Australian architecture, convey the aspirations of a nation and its artistic community and engage with notions of Australian identity within a global context.
- Advance the idea that inspirational art and inspirational architecture are not mutually exclusive.
Many prominent architects, academics, writers and architecture advocates have already signed the petition including:
- Professor Ian McDougall, founding director of Ashton Raggatt McDougall and Professor of Architecture & Urban Design, University of Adelaide,
- Donald L. Bates, Director, Lab architecture studio
- Professor Philip Goad, Director of the Melbourne School of Design and Professor of Architecture, Melbourne University
- Stuart Harrison and Simon Knott, ‘The Architects’ on RRR, the presenters of ‘Good, Bad or Ugly’ on the ABC’s Art Nation, and the directors of Harrison and White and BKK Architects respectively,
- Justine Clark, former editor of Architecture Australia
- and countless other passionate practitioners and members of the public.
Read more about the campaign here…