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Beyond the Biennale

The research project ‘Beyond the Biennale’ looks at the collateral effects the International Architecture Exhibition – La Biennale (short: Biennale) has on national or regional cultural politics, on the individual exhibitors as well as on the general discourse of architecture and its display.

Since its beginnings the Biennale has become an influential protagonist within international architectural debates, due to its ability to attract the most renowned stakeholders to Venice and highlight the most relevant tendencies. Not only is the Biennale a place for cultural translation and transnational encounters but also a testing ground for technical innovation (spatial, material) and a platform for research and education. It has become a place for experimentation and innovation defining new ways of architectural production, a phenomenon which has been well documented in the past. However, less material can be found about the collective memory of the ‘beyond effects’ of Biennale activities and about the question in which ways the event creates ‘other’ added values than the ones already known.

The publication ‘Beyond the Biennale’ (working title) wants to document the activities around the actual event by identifying possible additional values. Through the investigation of four case-studies (Switzerland, Austria, Germany and Liechtenstein) the publication will highlight three key aspects:

(A) The development and changes of the institutional structure and cultural policies regarding the      application and participation at the Biennale.

(B) An historic overview of facts and figures of the Biennale contributions of all four German speaking countries since its beginnings.

(C) An assembly of perspectives on side effects through the collective memory of different stakeholders.


Project duration: 

1 September 2019 - 31 August 2021