archiphoenix[09 September – 23 November 2008, Dutch pavilion, Venice Architecture Biennale] Commissioned by Ole Bouman, director of Netherlands Architecture Institute, Saskia van Stein and STEALTH curated and designed the event and an exhibition based on on-site production and participation of about 70 professionals. ARCHIPHOENIX – Faculties for Architecture has turned the Dutch Pavilion, at Venice Architecture Biennale 2008, into a weeklong stage for research and exploration and a debate platform focussing on the capacities and capabilities of architecture – beyond building. Triggered by the fire that devastated the Faculty of Architecture in Delft, the project aim was to envision an imaginary curriculum for architecture beyond division on education and practice – able to develop capacities, capabilities powers to respond to urgences of today.

The project focuses on five questions each architect encounters: WHY WE MAKE – beyond the profitable simplicity into the social sustainability, WHAT WE MAKE – beyond the artifact, HOW WE WORK – beyond the singular into the collaborative, FOR WHOM WE MAKE – beyond power to empowerment, and finally WHAT IT TAKES TO MAKE (AND UN-MAKE) – beyond the sustainable: challenging the flow of resources, materials and people. These five seemingly simple, yet essential questions, if put to face challenges ahead become serious issues for discussion.

From 9-14 September, during the Biennale opening days, the project has taken the opportunity to engage the vast network of architects and other professionals present in a direct exchange either as speakers, interviewers, moderators. To make it all happen a number of active and engaged people joined in a role of editors in this collaborative effort, to produce the six ‘boogazines’ made on-site. The spatial setting itself has been changing on a daily basis to accommodate dinner, round tables, speed dates, lectures, workshop, and an on-site instantly edited video and book production unit.

Visit project website to see photos, recording of all discussions and download the publication made on-site: