press release BRAVOURE - Biennale Architettura 2016


In late May, the Biennale Architettura 2016 – the international high mass for contemporary architecture – opens in Venice. The Flanders Architecture Institute (VAi) has chosen the BRAVOURE team to create an exhibition in the Belgian pavilion on the theme of ‘craftsmanship’. Curator Jan De Vylder is enthusiastic: “It’s fantastic to have the opportunity to celebrate the idea of ‘crafting something’ in Venice. With the aptly named BRAVOURE team, we will be celebrating craftsmanship with bravura.” 

Craftsmanship 2.0
The Flanders Architecture Institute is no stranger to organising the Belgian contribution to the International Architecture Exhibition. It has been coordinating the Belgian entry every four years since 2004, on a rotating basis with the French Community. The central theme this year is ‘craftsmanship’. “We are not using this term simply to refer to age-old crafts”, explains Christoph Grafe, Director of the Flanders Architecture Institute. “We are using it to explore opportunities for building and producing in partnership. How can designers and makers join forces to shape a city?” Architecten de vylder vinck taillieu, doorzon interieurarchitecten and the architectural photographer/artist Filip Dujardin make up the BRAVOURE team, which has devised the exhibition concept for the Belgian pavilion. Architect Jan De Vylder points to the importance of the economic added value that craftsmanship brings to architecture: “We are exploring what craftsmanship can mean during a period of economic scarcity. Dealing with this scarcity demands a high level of precision.”

Thirteen projects from thirteen firms
In order to illustrate its vision of craftsmanship, BRAVOURE will be exhibiting fragments of thirteen representative projects from thirteen Flemish architects in the Belgian pavilion. Full-size replicas will be used to demonstrate how scarcity can lead to craftsmanship. De Vylder explains: “The fragment is exhibited as it really is. At the same time, it is cut out of its context, which ultimately gives it a new dimension.” Thirteen architectural firms have contributed to the exhibition: De Smet Vermeulen architecten, Philippe Vander Maren - Richard Venlet, Wim Goes Architectuur, architecten Els Claessens en Tania Vandenbussche, Eagles of Architecture, Jo Van Den Berghe - architect, BURO II & ARCHI+I, Robbrecht en Daem architecten i.s.m. Arch & Teco, OFFICE Kersten Geers David Van Severen, Laura Muyldermans + Atelier Starzak Strebicki, Gijs Van Vaerenbergh, Stéphane Beel Architects and Architectenbureau Bart Dehaene – Sileghem & Partners in collaboration with Ante Timmermans.

The Flemish minister for Culture Sven Gatz about BRAVOURE
“Our presence at the Architecture Biennale in Venice indicates Flanders’ ambition to aim for a more prominent spot at the international culture scene. The Flemish architectural sector is one of the most vital in Europe and is international renowned for its strong artistic persuasion as well as the distinctive cultural profile of our architects. Choosing BRAVOURE shows the Flanders Architecture Institute mandated a promising team covering the very relevant subject of craftsmanship.”

The Biennale Architettura in Venice and the BRAVOURE exhibition in the Belgian pavilion will run from 28 May to 27 November 2016. On Thursday 26 May, the pavilion was inaugurated by Flemish Minister for Culture Sven Gatz. 



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