17. Mostra Internazionale di Architettura – utopias of common life

Informazioni Evento

Fondamenta dell'Arsenale , Venezia, Italia
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The press event (all in Portuguese) for the Brazilian Pavilion at this year’s Biennale will be live streamed on Thursday 20 May at 5pm CEST, after the exhibition opening at 10am CEST that same day.


ore 17 digital preview


Il Brasile partecipa alla Biennale Architettura 2021 con il progetto utopias of common life.

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The Fundação Bienal de São Paulo announces its project for Brazil’s official participation in the 17th International Architecture Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia

utopias of common life
Brazilian Pavilion
Giardini Napoleonici di Castello, Padiglione Brasile, 30122 Venice, Italy
22 May – 21 November 2021
Preview: 20 and 21 May 2021

Commissioner: José Olympio da Veiga Pereira, president of the Fundação Bienal de São Paulo
Curators: Arquitetos Associados (Alexandre Brasil, André Luiz Prado, Bruno Santa Cecília, Carlos Alberto Maciel and Paula Zasnicoff) and Henrique Penha
Exhibitors: Aiano Bemfica, Cris Araújo, Edinho Vieira, Alexandre Delijaicov | Grupo de Pesquisa Metrópole Fluvial – Faculdade de Arquitetura e Urbanismo da Universidade de São Paulo, Amir Admoni, Gustavo Minas, Joana França, Leonardo Finotti, Luiza Baldan
Entitled utopias of common life, the national representation at the Brazilian Pavilion dialogues with the overall theme of the Biennale Architettura 2021, How Will We Live Together? Curated by the collaborative studio Arquitetos Associados and the visual designer Henrique Penha, the exhibition is realized by the Fundação Bienal in partnership with the Special Secretariat for Culture. A live stream with the curators and organizers will take place on 20 May, at 5pm CEST / 12pm Brazilian time, after the Brazilian Pavilion's opening that will happen the same day, at 10am CEST.

The Fundação Bienal de São Paulo is now announcing its plans for occupying the Brazilian Pavilion at the 17th International Architecture Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia. Opening to the public on May 22, 2021, the exhibition is curated by the collaborative studio Arquitetos Associados (consisting of the architects and urbanists Alexandre Brasil, André Luiz Prado, Bruno Santa Cecília, Carlos Alberto Maciel and Paula Zasnicoff) and visual designer Henrique Penha. utopias of common life begins by mapping utopias that exist on Brazilian soil, from the Guarani world vision of a Land Without Evil to contemporary times, highlighting two singular moments among them where transformative ideas either promoted or have the potential to promote significant changes in how architecture and the city can foster new alternatives for common life. The exhibition features a digital catalogue, which will be released in June 2021.

On the preview of the 17th International Architecture Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia [Venice Biennale], on 20 May, the Fundação Bienal de São Paulo will produce, on its Youtube channel, an online event to introduce to the public the exhibition utopias of common life. The live streaming will count with the participation of the exhibition curators and talks by José Olympio da Veiga Pereira, president of the Fundação Bienal de São Paulo, and Mario Frias, Special Secretary of Culture – the department of Brazilian federal government, within the Ministry of Tourism, that organizes the exhibition jointly with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The event will feature live images from the Brazilian Pavilion in the Giardini, in Venice, and excerpts from the video works integrating the show. The digital preview, with approximately 30 minutes of duration, will be streamed in Portuguese only and will start at 5pm CEST (12pm Brazil time). The public will be able to visit the exhibition from Saturday, 22 May, until Sunday, 21 November, 2021.

The curatorial project is motivated by the urgent need to think about utopias in the contemporary world. As Carlos Alberto Maciel explains: "The idea of utopia runs through various moments in the history of thinking about and producing Brazilian space, long before Thomas More coined the word in his celebrated book. In constructing this curatorial narrative, we seek to transpose and redefine the concept as a device for approaching the contemporary." Conceived before the Covid-19 pandemic, which has temporarily suspended the possibility of physical proximity in a large part of the world, the proposal gains new meanings in the current context: “It seems that the urgent need of rethinking forms of coexistence between humans and the planet in viable and socially inclusive ecological terms is amplified by the collective experience imposed by the pandemic, thus reinforcing the relevance of the themes the exhibition seeks to discuss,” the curators add.

utopias of common life consists of two sections shown in each of the two rooms that compose the Brazilian Pavilion. The smaller room will hold the section Futures of the Past, dedicated to two iconic designs of modern architecture and to the utopias that guided them, built between the end of the Estado Novo and the JK years (1946 to 1961). The large room will feature Futures of the Present, where two videos especially commissioned for the Biennale Architettura 2021 will be screened, which utopically reflect on the occupation of the contemporary metropolises.

Futures of the Past presents an interpretation, through the eyes of visual artist Luiza Baldan, of the Pedregulho Housing Complex in Rio de Janeiro’s North Zone, one of the largest social housing undertakings in the 1940s and highly innovative at its time, designed in 1947 by Affonso Eduardo Reidy. This section also presents the photographic essay by photographer Gustavo Minas about everyday life at the Brasília Bus Station Platform (1957), designed by Lucio Costa, a very unique work built at the intersection of the two axes that constitute the Pilot Plan for Brazil’s federal capital. Capping off the section are the architectural photographs by Leonardo Finotti and Joana França. More than conveying the architecture of these works, the presentation of these images also aims to reveal the way that they were occupied. The ideas that guided the designs of these two constructions are thus juxtaposed with the reality of their actual occupation.

The large room of the Brazilian Pavilion will hold the section Futures of the Present, where two brand-new videos commissioned especially for the Biennale Architettura 2021 will be screened. They both point to new ways for humans to live together and to interact with the surrounding space. The first, by directors Aiano Bemfica, Cris Araújo and Edinho Vieira, presents the possibilities for the reappropriation of buildings in the downtown districts of large metropolises. The second video, by director Amir Admoni, poetically interprets an idea for the appropriation of rivers and their banks conceived by the Metrópole Fluvial project – a 2010 proposal for the city of São Paulo by a research group of the same name at the University of São Paulo –, which questions the model of road transport adopted by the metropolis and points to new alternatives for daily life.

More information is available in the full press release in English, Portuguese or Italian.