Competition Open Call: A Bench in Venice

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The National Pavilion United Arab Emirates at La Biennale di Venezia , led by co-curator Wael Al Awar in collaboration with the Curator’s Collective, launches an international open call for Design students to propose a bench design for installation in Venice during the summer of 2021.For the first time in the Biennale Architettura de Venezia’s 40-year history, national pavilion curators around the globe are working together to investigate new avenues for fulfilling the Biennale’s potential as a platform for synergistic, expansive, and accessible collaboration. Known as the Curators’ Collective (CC), over 50 participating national pavilions have joined in the ongoing dialog alongside the Biennale’s chief curator, Hashim Sarkis.
In this collaborative spirit, the CC contemplates one of the oldest and most basic units of social exchange, the bench. This open call puts forth the idea that the bench can be a key activator of Common Space, enabling observation, reflection and, therefore, dialog. As the world continues to grapple with today’s twin urgencies of the pandemic and accelerating climate change, the need for dialog is greater than ever.
How can the design of a bench both spark and frame this dialogue?
To learn more about this open call and download the submission materials, please visit: