Russian Federation Pavilion at the 13th Architectural Biennale. Special Mention
Supervisor: Sergey Tchoban
Co-supervisors: Sergey Kuznetsov, Valeria Kashirina
Commissary: Grigoriy Revzin
Software: Konstantin Chernozatonskiy, TreeLev LLC
AREP, SPEECH Tchoban & Kuznetsov, David Chipperfield Architects, Valode& Pistre, Mohsen Mostafavi, OMA, SANAA, Herzog& de Meuron, Stefano Boeri architetti, Project MEGANOM, MDP/ Michel Desvigne paysagiste, BERNASKONI architecture bureau, concept and software development by TreeLev LLC
This year at the XIII Architectural Biennale in Venice, Russia presents the “i-citi/i-land” exposi- tion dedicated to the Skolkovo innovative town project.
The biennale subject is common ground, which implies reference to traditions of collaboration, shared aspirations and ambitions necessary to go ahead. This is precisely why the Skolkovo In- nocity project was chosen this year for the Russian exposition in Venice as a project fully meeting the exhibition subject.
An unprecedented number of famous foreign and Russian architects consolidated their efforts in the “Skolkovo” project. Their collaboration is of enormous importance for the promotion of arc- hitectural, town planning and technological innovations in the Russian urbanistics practice.
To emphasize the innovative nature of the “Skolkovo” project and its existence at the intersection point of technology, science, urbanistics and architecture, an original concept was developed combining the demonstration of architectural and city planning projects as well as the presenta- tion of scientific and technical innovations . As such an intersection point, the well-known QR code (concept and development by TreeLev LLC) is used. Its graphic expressiveness and orna
mentality made it possible to create a unique space in the pavilion with its sacral majesty natural- ly harmonizing with eye-catching technocratics. On the walls of the enfilade of three halls sur- faced with metal panels with dozens if not hundreds of QR codes engraved on them, an enormous volume of information about the “Skolkovo” project execution stages was allocated: from the city planning concept to individual units as the focus points of future development and from district planning to the results of contests for the development elements included into them. The pavilion visitors may obtain access to all the information via tablet computers, which allow scanning codes and browsing through relevant illustrative and text materials. Thus, the visitors get involved in the interactive process of the perception of information content.
The second part of the exposition, located on the basement floor and connected with the main part in the enfilade in terms of both design and contents, is dedicated to the history of the 37 Soviet Science Towns, the closed “secret” towns quite difficult to access due to potential “intellectual espionage.” Now, pictures of streets, squares and individual buildings of such towns demonstrat- ed at the international exhibition allowed cracking-open the screen of secrecy over them and see- ing with one’s own eyes how people lived and are still living there. The exposition was designed according to the “espionage” theme. Small openings covered with glass were made in the black panels. Each visitor may peep into them and see some photos from old chronicles and the draw- ings of certain buildings and districts of such cities.
The combination of the two parts of the exhibition provides a visitor with the insight in the way the historical experience of construction engineering and existence of classified Soviet Science Towns was transformed into a concept of the open modern urban environment, where scientific achievements and high technologies become not just a goal in and of itself, but also a means to improve the quality of life.
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