School of Architecture, Planning & Landscape

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Professor Armstrong curates The Azerbaijan Pavilion at Venice Biennale

Rachel Armstrong, Professor of Experimental Architecture, is the Scientific Curator of the IDEA Laboratory at the Azerbaijan Pavilion's Vita Vitale exhibition at the Venice Biennale 2015.

Vita Vitale (Vital Life) considers how human activity impacts upon the delicate balance of our planet’s ecosystem, and the repercussions for our future survival. Illuminating the ways in which we have transformed the planet, the exhibition explores the effects of plastic pollutants, mass consumerism, climate change, depleting resources, deteriorating landscapes, rising sea levels, and endangered species. While some of the exhibition’s artists and scientists directly address environmental concerns, others do so more laterally. However, they all challenge us to confront the potential dangers of ignoring the messages that Vita Vitaleconveys, while simultaneously suggesting creative tools and ideas for change.

Responding to the artworks and ideas animating Vita Vitale, the IDEA (International Dialogue for Environmental Action) Laboratory provides an experimental space for developing ambitious, long-term projects endeavouring to shape our future relationship with the natural world. A stimulating site for ongoing exploration, it hosts an exciting range of scientific and design prototypes. Additionally, its international contributors and visitors spark lively yet focused exchanges about how we may thrive synergistically with our ecosystems. 

The IDEA Laboratory will run until November 2015.  

Read a review of the IDEA Laboratory.

Find out more about our MSc in Experimental Architecture

Image: Zanzara Island credit: Rachel Armstrong. 


published on: 8 May 2015