RCR Dream and Nature: Biennale Architecture 2018
After receiving the Pritzker Architecture Prize in 2017, RCR Arquitectes (Rafael Aranda, Carme Pigem and Ramon Vilalta) have excelled and gained much attention in the field of architecture and design. In conjunction with the Institut Ramon Llull, the firm presents its innovative new project: RCR. Dream and Nature Catalonia in Venice.
Architecture is merely the vehicle by which RCR presents their visionary dream. Although physically present in the Biennale, visitors are transported to a dream-world in the exhibit. Viewers enter in to a utopia completely removed the reality of everyday life. According to Pati Nuñez, “We’re suggesting experimenting with new formats applied to the dissemination of architecture. There are no models or blueprints at the exhibition. The dream in the title refers to the most intimate side of Rafael, Carme and Ramon because their way of understanding the world is what forms the basis their architecture.” As co-curator of the project, Nuñez also directed the PR strategy for the Golden Lion Award-winning Spanish Pavilion in the last Biennale di Venezia.
Rafeal, Carme, and Ramon crafted the Dream and Nature theme by carefully drawing on the landscape of La Vila and the town of Olot. Through the exhibit, we see a dream world that is inspired by the intersection of surreal, intangible dream states and the raw, authentic architectural reality. At this intersection, visitors are immersed in a world that distorts their dreams into reality, and converts their realities into dream-like illusions.
In the 2018 Biennale, RCR presents a highly intimate exhibit. The journey of the project is not linear, but rather rambling, in an attempt to evoke dream-like sensations. In order to transport visitors into RCR’s collective dream, the installation begins by passing through the Threshold of the dream. This demarcation causes a dissociation from reality, and begins a step into the Dream. The space toes the line between reality and dematerialization, between a state of being awake and sleep. Finally, visitors pass into the Dream, where they are fully submerged in a surreal landscape where they can create their own experience of their surroundings. Through this profound Geography of Dreams, the vision of the installation is fragmented by magnifying glasses that seem to float in the air.
In addition to the installation of RCR. Dream and Nature, the Architecture Biennale also presented the Parallel Program, NEW FORMATS: DREAM AND NATURE. This series of debates and panels aims to open others’ imaginations to varying perspectives on architecture and design. Most notably, RCR presented debates on knowledge production, communication processes of art and architecture, and architecture criticism. Well-known architects and curators such as Eva Franch (Storefront for Art and Architecture in New York City), Pedro Gadanho (director of the Museum of Art, Architecture and Technology in Lisbon), Glenn Murcutt (founder of Architecture Foundation Australia & Pritzker recipient in 2002), Juhani Pallasmaa (noted Finnish Architect), and William J.R. Curtis (award-winning architectural historian). These engaging and insightful discussions can be found here.
The RCR Dream and Nature feature in this year’s Biennale certainly pays tribute to the long history of the importance of architecture in the Venice Biennales. The history of the architecture Biennale dates back to 1980 Venice. After having established Biennales in art, film, music and theatre, architects and enthusiasts drew from their excitement and emotional connection to pioneer the 1st International Architecture Exhibition- La Biennale di Venezia. Since then, notable architects and architecture students have gathered for this legendary event.
Architecture and art enthusiasts unable to attend the Biennale in person need not worry that they missed such an innovative and eye-opening event. Thanks to Actar Publishers, those interested in the exhibition can read all about the vision behind the project.
16th International Architecture Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia http://www.labiennale.org/en/architecture/2018
Curators: Yvonne Farrell and Shelley McNamara; Director: Paolo Baratta. La Biennale Architettura 2018 will present 100 participants, 63 international collaborations, 12 collateral events and two special projects.