In this year’s International Architecture Exhibition entitled, FREESPACE, the Singapore Pavilion asks, No More Free Space?, in response to the theme of space conceived by curators Yvonne Farrell and Shelley McNamara.
The Singapore Pavilion at La Biennale Di Venezia was commissioned by the DesignSingapore Council (Dsg) of the Ministry of Communications and Information, and the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA). The pavilion was curated by the Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD) in collaboration with the National University of Singapore’s (NUS) Department of Architecture.
No More Free Space? talks about how Singapore-based architects, urban planners, and visionaries have found creative ways to bring livable free spaces to the city’s everyday living despite the limited space.
Singapore is a multi-cultural, multi-ethnic island city-state with a population of 5.6 million people on a land area of just about 720km2. Its dense urban areas have to support a multitude of uses and needs while dealing with limited space.
The exhibition features 12 Singapore-based projects that highlight the resourcefulness of the architects, their inspirations, and the realization of ideas, while harnessing natural resources such as light, greenery, air, and water. Each project featured show imagination, discovery, openness, and resolution to turn challenges into possibilities. These projects also tap into the social well-being of societies in order to bring joy and connect people to the large community.
The centerpiece of the Pavilion features an immersive installation, an ethereal cloud made of fine handcrafted acrylic knots gently suspended in the vast spaces of the Sale d’Armi. With a multi-sensory projection of lights, sounds, and images of Singapore, the Pavilion invites visitors to immerse themselves in the spaces within the cloud. This presentation will also be staged back in Singapore in 2019 to enter the public about turning Singapore’s physical limitations into possibilities through imagination and creativity.
Being 400 times smaller than Italy, Singapore has turned its limitations into opportunity by showcasing the potential of a highly compact city. As a city-state, Singapore has to allocate land not just for housing, business, utilities, and recreation, but it also has to make sure that there is land for future use to keep their economy afloat and vibrant.
Minister for Communications and Information Mr. S. Iswaran shares, “The Singapore story is one of overcoming constraints and turning adversity into opportunity. The Singapore Pavilion embodies this ethos. Our architects have not allowed limited physical space to limit their ambitions. They have used their imagination to create more with less, which is also relevant for a rapidly urbanising Asia and the world. The aim of our Pavilion is to share Singapore’s experience with others facing similar challenges – how we have overcome constraints through design to build a better home for our people.”
“Delightful spaces are places we love to be in; they are where we create shared memories and make emotional connections. Whether it’s a community kitchen in the unused space of a public housing development, or a library in a shopping mall, good design can make us feel positive about a space. The Singapore Pavilion spotlights the best examples of our architects shaping an innovative and loveable city by design,” said Mr. Mark Wee, Executive Director (Designate) of the DesignSingapore Council (Dsg) and Co-Commissioner of the Singapore Pavilion.
Mr. Larry Ng, Group Director of Architecture and Urban Design Excellence at the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) and Co-Commissioner of the Singapore Pavilion.“Singapore is one of the world’s most liveable cities, an outcome of integrated and long-term planning, with priority placed on good architecture and urban design. The articulation of good design in our spaces not only sparks imagination, but can also evoke wonder and turn spaces from the functional and utilitarian into a delightful community asset. The Singapore Pavilion this year, showcases creative brilliance in the design of our public and private spaces, bringing vibrancy and delight to the people.”
“SUTD is honoured to lead the curation of this year’s Singapore Pavilion at the Venice Biennale. Through ‘No More Free Space?’, my fellow curators from architectural practice, SUTD and NUS hope to present to the world the delightful possibilities of designing spaces out of limited or even non-existent free space. Drawing from the best 12 Singapore projects, we hope to spur our imagination of the possibilities and elicit an appreciation of free space of architecture,” said Professor Erwin Viray, the Head of the Architecture and Sustainable Design pillar at the Singapore University of Technology and Design.
Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD) is Singapore’s fourth public university, and one of the first universities in the world to incorporate the art and science of design and technology into a multi-disciplinary curriculum. The Singapore University of Technology and Design is established to advance knowledge and nurture technically-grounded leaders and innovators to serve societal needs, with a focus on Design, through an integrated multi-disciplinary curriculum and multi-disciplinary research.
Interested in making the most out of limited space? Study in Singapore and learn how you can make constraints into a myriad of alternative possibilities!