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Beyond the Venice Biennale of Architecture

English title Beyond the Venice Biennale of Architecture
Applicant Moravánszky Ákos
Number 150252
Funding scheme Project funding
Research institution Architekturtheorie Institut gta ETH Zürich
Institution of higher education ETH Zurich - ETHZ
Main discipline Architecture and Social urban science
Start/End 01.12.2013 - 30.11.2015
Approved amount 115'563.00
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All Disciplines (2)

Discipline
Architecture and Social urban science
Visual arts and Art history

Keywords (8)

Architectural History and Theory; Venice Biennale of Architecture; Architectural Culture; Architectural Disciplinary; Transdisciplinary; Institutional Culture; Interdisciplinary; Biennale Culture

Lay Summary (Italian)

Lead
Il progetto di ricerca Beyond Venice Biennale of Architecture analizza come il contorni disciplinari de la architettura sono concettualizzato, discusso e presentato nel contesto della Biennale d’Architettura di Venezia, dal 1980 al inizio del secolo XXI. La ricerca intende collegare due storie apparentemente distintive: la cultura disciplinare dell'architettura e la propria cultura della Biennale di Venezia.
Lay summary

Il progetto di ricerca Beyond Venice Biennale of Architecture analizza come i contorni disciplinari dell'architettura sono stati concettualizzati, discussi e presentati nel contesto della Biennale di Architettura di Venezia, dal 1980 fino all' inizio del XXI secolo. La ricerca intende collegare due storie apparentemente distinte: la cultura disciplinare dell'architettura e la propria cultura della Biennale di Venezia.

La riflessione sull'architettura, come disciplina, è rimasta ad un certo livello di astrazione, oscurando il percorso che i campi disciplinari sono stati tracciati nel corso degli ultimi decenni. Allo stesso modo, c’è stata poca ricerca sui meccanismi con cui i concetti, i metodi e la terminologia da altre culture epistemiche sono stati tradotti in un discorso architettonico. Anche, i diversi livelli coinvolti nella complessità disciplinare (istituzionale, teorico, critico, simbolico) non sono stati sufficientemente esplorati e confrontati.

Prestando maggiore attenzione alle molteplici dimensioni dell’interdisciplinarietà in un’istituzione "reale" — cioè il luogo in cui si produce il discorso disciplinare dell'architettura, strutturato e diffuso ­—, la natura del discorso architettonico, l'istituzionalizzazione e diffusione di convenzioni, tassonomie e concetti emergono con più chiarezza. Così, prendendo la Biennale di Architettura di Venezia come un campo di ricerca laboratoriale, sostengo che la conoscenza disciplinare non è contenuta solo in categorie classificatorie o  accademiche, e che lo studio della disciplina architettonica e del pensiero disciplinare dovrebbe prendere in considerazione le sue fluttuazioni nel tempo: l'architettura è un campo storicamente discontinuo e un soggetto di cambiamento.

 

 

Direct link to Lay Summary Last update: 11.11.2013

Lay Summary (English)

Lead
Lay summary (English)The research project Beyond the Venice Biennale of Architecture analyzes how architectural disciplinary frames have been conceptualized, discussed and presented within the context of the Venice Biennale of Architecture, from 1980 to the onset of the 21st century. It intends to connect two apparently distinctive story lines: architecture’s disciplinary culture on the one hand, and the Venice Biennale’s own culture on the other.
Lay summary

Lay summary (English)

 

           The research project Beyond the Venice Biennale of Architecture analyzes how architectural disciplinary frames have been conceptualized, discussed and presented within the context of the Venice Biennale of Architecture, from 1980 to the onset of the 21st century. It intends to connect two apparently distinctive story lines: architecture’s disciplinary culture on the one hand, and the Venice Biennale’s own culture on the other. To what extent has the Venice Biennale of Architecture been an instrument of protecting, fixing or redrawing the architectural disciplinary boundaries — excluding and including discourses; transcending conventional frontiers; adapting and legitimating the culture of other disciplinary fields; expanding or fixing limits?

           The reflection on architecture, as a discipline, has remained at a certain level of abstraction, obscuring the route that disciplinary frames have been tracing over the last few decades. In the same sense, there is still little research on the mechanisms by which the concepts, methods and terminology from other epistemic cultures have been translated into architectural discourse. Also, the multiple layers involved in disciplinary complexity (institutional; theoretical; critical; symbolical) haven’t been sufficiently explored and confronted.

                  This research will look beyond the biannual architectural displays to enquire how the crossed analysis of three lines of architectural discourse — public discourse, institutional discourse, critical discourse — and how the relationships between actors, institutions, concepts and fields of knowledge, can reveal new arguments on the topic.

               

Direct link to Lay Summary Last update: 11.11.2013

Responsible applicant and co-applicants

Employees

Publications

Publication
Venice Biennale. Architecture, Discipline and Crisis
Figueiredo Rute (2014), Venice Biennale. Architecture, Discipline and Crisis, in Archithese, 2014(5), 84-88.

Collaboration

Group / person Country
Types of collaboration
IUAV_ Istituto Universitario di Architettura di Venezia Italy (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
Fondazione La Biennale di Venezia Italy (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
Prof. Marco Pogacnik IUAV (co-supervisor) Italy (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results

Scientific events

Active participation

Title Type of contribution Title of article or contribution Date Place Persons involved
International Colloquium Published Positions Talk given at a conference On the site of discourse 25.10.2015 Lisbon, Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian, Portugal Veiga Rute;
2015 International Conference of the Historical Network Research Talk given at a conference Venice Architecture Biennale: Mapping the invisible 17.09.2015 Lisbon , Portugal Veiga Rute;
Lecture given at the ISCTE-Lisbon University Institute Individual talk Reading architecture throughout real institutions 26.05.2015 Lisbon, Portugal Veiga Rute;
68th Annual Conference of the Society of Architectural Historians Talk given at a conference Venice Architecture Biennale: on disciplinary boundaries 16.04.2015 Chicago, United States of America Veiga Rute;


Self-organised

Title Date Place

Communication with the public

Communication Title Media Place Year
Talks/events/exhibitions Agents International 2015
Talks/events/exhibitions Architecture as seen by non architects International 2015

Associated projects

Number Title Start Funding scheme
116917 Precisions - Architektur zwischen Kunst und Wissenschaft 01.07.2007 Publication grants
136009 Experiments - Architektur zwischen Wissenschaft und Kunst / Architecture between Sciences and the Arts 01.02.2011 Publication grants

Abstract

The research project Beyond the Venice Biennale of Architecture analyzes how architectural disciplinary frames have been conceptualized, discussed and presented within the context of the Venice Biennale of Architecture, from 1980 to the onset of the 21st century. It is, thus, concerned with connecting two apparently distinctive story lines: architecture’s disciplinary culture on the one hand, and the Venice Biennale’s own culture on the other. To what extent has the Venice Biennale of Architecture been an instrument of protecting, fixing or redrawing the architectural disciplinary boundaries - excluding and including discourses; transcending conventional frontiers; adapting and legitimating the culture of other disciplinary fields; expanding or fixing limits?During the past few years, there has been an increasing interest in reflecting about the disciplinary “position” of architecture within the panorama of epistemic cultures in general, as well as a widespread consensus that architecture tends to define itself by the appropriation of terminology, methods and concepts belonging to other fields of knowledge. However, there is no agreement on the boundaries of such a “position”. The reflection on architectural disciplinarity - frequently expressed in fixed categories between autonomy versus heteronomy, or disciplinarity versus interdisciplinarity - has remained at a certain level of abstraction, obscuring the route that disciplinary frames have been tracing over the last few decades. In the same sense, there is still little research on the mechanisms by which the concepts, methods and terminology from other epistemic cultures have been translated into architectural discourse. Also, the multiple dimensions or layers involved in disciplinary complexity (institutional; theoretical; critical; symbolical) haven’t been sufficiently explored and confronted.The research project Beyond the Venice Biennale of Architecture pursues such aims and intends to fill these gaps. The study will, as the title suggests, look beyond the biannual architectural displays to enquire how the crossed analysis of three discursive lines - public, institutional, critical - and how the constellations of relationships (between actors, institutions, concepts and fields of knowledge) in which the events are grounded, can reveal new arguments on the topic. In this sense, the route proposed from the Presence of the Past (the first exhibition, curated by Paolo Portoghesi in 1980) to the Common Ground (the most recent exhibition, curated by David Chipperfield in 2012), embodies a story line or, to be more precise, multiple and crossed story-lines, an axis of which is given by the disciplinary discourse expressed in two significant, juxtaposed perspectives that may serve as anchors for my reflection: 1) a diachronic perspective, analyzing only the “public” dimension of the discourse, between 1980 and 2012; 2) and, simultaneously, a synchronic perspective, segmenting the first story line in four key moments of institutional changes (1980; 1998; 2004; 2012), in which the several layers of the disciplinary discourse and the constellations of relationships between the actors will be confronted and explored.The argument is that by paying more attention to the multiple dimensions of disciplinarity in a concrete “real” institution - i.e. the place in which disciplinary discourse of architecture is produced, framed and disseminated -, the nature of the architectural discourse, and the institutionalization and diffusion of conventions, taxonomies, and concepts emerges with the greatest clarity. By taking Venice Biennale of Architecture as a laboratorial field of research, I am placing emphasis on such ideas. The research project has been motivated by the idea that disciplinary knowledge is not exclusively contained in academic or classificatory categories and that the study of architectural discipline and disciplinary thought should consider its own fluctuations over time: architecture is a historically discontinuous field and a subject of change.
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