Rotterdam Architects biq stadsontwerp Participate in Architecture Biennale in Venice

Contribution with social housing project to David Chipperfield’s motto ‘Common Ground’

Rotterdam, 28th of August 2012 – ‘Common Ground’ is the topic of the 13th International Architecture Exhibiton, directed by David Chipperfield and organized by la Biennale di Venezia. Invitations went to a list of contributors who invited additional architects to join their attendance. biq stadsontwerp is part of the group gathered by London architects Peter St. John and Adam Caruso. The Biennale gives the Dutch architects, who are based in Rotterdam, but have a European focus, the opportunity to demonstrate that affordable housing is still recognized for its architectural relevance. And to underline with their work the idea of the ‘Common Ground’, by asserting that architecture should have an impact on volume building and the design of cities, rather than producing solitaires and loose icons. The Biennale will open its doors on the 29th of August.

David Chipperfield, the director of this year’s biennale, titled the exhibition Common Ground. 61 projects are presented in the Central Pavilion at the Giardini and the Arsenale. Involved in these presentations are other colleagues with whom the participants share a Common Ground. The idea of this motto is to consider, how architecture can influence its direct environment, but must be also seen in a wider context including history and language, city and culture. The goal of the Biennale is therefore also to show different integrated approaches in architecture, rather than focusing on solitaire projects only.

biq stadsontwerp was invited by Caruso St. John architects, based in London, UK, to show their ideas about Urban Design. Other members of this group are Peter Märkli (Zürich), Knapkiewicz Fickert en Hermann Czech (Wenen), Hild und K (München) and Bovenbouw (Antwerpen). biq stadsontwerp will present the project ‘Lakerlopen’ in Eindhoven, NL, which received last year the German Fritz Hoeger Award. The architects have reconstructed the district’s conventional houses lining conventional urban spaces: a square, a court, an alley, streets and a green boulevard. Corners and long facades are marked by special forms of living. Cars are parked within the perimeter of the blocks. The use of streets as urban living spaces has been reinstalled.

The Rotterdam architects are very excited about their participation and are triggered by the theme raised in this Biennale. According to Hans van der Heijden, one of the founders of biq stadsontwerp, architecture needs to return to the ambition, that has been lost in the second half of the previous century: to have an impact on volume building and the design of cities rather than the production of loose icons.

The Architecture Biennale starts on the 29th of August and will end on the 25th of November 2012.

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