Venice Biennale : common grounds

A modern patchwork

Chipperfield in Venice : searching for common grounds

I have been lucky to visit Venice in 2012 just between two floods. That way I have been visiting “common grounds” walking on the pavement and not water.

The national exhibitions in the Giardini could have been classified in categories. The ones have been reacting to recent mediated events, like the US and Occupy, Japan and the tsunami or the interesting Greek pavilion and the crisis. Some have been more artistic, like the Austrian or the Dutch. Others have focused on design, like the Scandinavian. The last category has been fascinated by tablet computers, especially eastern Europe. It is true that these devices are able to interact with space. They can augment reality. But their content remains virtual and limited to an individual experience. There is also too much product placement in my opinion.

The Chipperfield “common grounds” have been once again, without surprise, a common ground between his practice and his star friends : the club from Foster, Nouvel to BIG. As long as this common grounds get fueled with good ideas from all over the world, especially Africa, these leading practices will sail on a common direction.

The biggest blast remains the marvelous city of Venice, even if it becomes more and more like the copycat of Vegas. The ramps on the bridges might be the first step to escalators.

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