Following a call for projects launched by the Institut français, which runs the French Pavilion, the ministers of Foreign Affairs and International Development and of Culture and Communication selected the project Nouvelles Richesses, which was submitted by the Obras-Frédéric Bonnet team and the Collectif AJAP14.
This project fits perfectly into the the 15th International Architecture Exhibition’s thematic focus – Reporting from the Front – chosen by the Artistic Director of the Biennale Architettura 2016, Chilean architect Alejandro Aravena, who won the 2016 Pritzker Prize.
The Artistic Director has explained his choice in the following words:
“(…) REPORTING FROM THE FRONT will be about sharing with a broader audience, the work of people that are scrutinizing the horizon looking for new fields of action, facing issues like segregation, inequalities, peripheries, access to sanitation, natural disasters, housing shortage, migration, informality, crime, traffic, waste, pollution and participation of communities. And simultaneously will be about presenting examples where different dimensions are synthesized, integrating the pragmatic with the existential, pertinence and boldness, creativity and common sense.
Such expansion and synthesis are not easy to achieve; they are battles that need to be fought. (…).” Alejandro Aravena suggests highlighting “success stories and exemplary cases where architecture did, is and will make a difference”.
The project Nouvelles Richesses, which will be developed in the French Pavilion by the Obras- Frédéric Bonnet team and the Collectif AJAP14, will provide a unique contribution to this debate, and is intended to illustrate a genuine commitment to daily life and to high-quality living conditions. It will show how, all over France, new organisations are appearing and redefining the potential of local territories, in particular rural and peri-urban ones. It will also bear witness to the vitality of French architecture, of its know-how and of its ability to respond to emerging challenges. The architects have adopted a resolutely optimistic approach: “We do not believe in the madness of having different territories competing with each other; on the contrary, we believe that there are huge resources, complementary factors, and latent values everywhere, and that all that is necessary is to mobilise, reveal, and fertilise them”.
The architects here are not drawing a great emblematic building, but rather paying attention to more ordinary buildings, highlighting the architecture of day-to-day life, at the service of the greatest possible number of people. Their role cannot be reduced to that of builders; rather they are engaged witnesses to the transformation of a territory, a process which also involves many other players: elected representatives, citizens, companies.
Exhibitors: Julien Boidot, Emilien Robin, Boris Bouchet, Boris Nauleau, Antoine Petit, Nicolas Debicki, Grichka Martinetti, Lucie Niney, Thibault Marca, Jean Rehault, Jordi Primas, Marina Ramirez, Romain Gie, Alice Wijnen, Guillaume Relier, Benoît Sindt, Christophe Aubertin,Xavier Géant, Agnès Hausermann, Eléonore Nicolas, Nastasia Vellandi.
France Pavilion, Venice, Giardini