Peru Pavilion Venice Biennale
For the selection competition for the curatorial project for the Peruvian Pavilion at the 16th Venice Architecture Biennale. Freespace is an exhibition that highlights the panorama of contemporary architecture on a global level in one place.
In this sense, we decided to talk about our landscape, to engage in a discussion about the conditions in which we build and the territory where we build.
On the central Peruvian coast, the ancient inhabitants depended on the aridity of the land and this inconsequential climate to build their century-old monuments. This speaks to an ancestral knowledge of the territorial conditions of this area of low rainfall and high relative humidity, of an arid desert with scattered valleys. All this knowledge was left aside to be replaced by new constructive uses and new space organizations brought from the old continent. In time, formal settlements and cities would use materials and constructive technologies available in architecture also learned from other places.
But in those buildings born of necessity, made by people whose ancient traditions were part of their upbringing, not only their way of occupying the territory but their understanding of the unique conditions of their environment, create a strong contrast between the generic development of cities and the vernacular form of occupation of the landscape. We also find tools of interpretation and aesthetic construction of special value that we want to explore within this discussion: Light, Temperature, Humidity, Geography, Materiality and Nature.
Fog is the result of the combination of these factors in specific measures that only occur in this territory. Low clouds without precipitation filter the tropical light turning it into a white and diffuse light that extinguishes colors and disappears shadows, that do not bounce or exalt volumes, and that extinguishes textures but impregnates the city and its people with character, who are indifferent if not melancholic. This dirty and sticky sky proposes other rules, and its shy light and insistent humidity open new possibilities for architecture.
This unique atmosphere is a present and a constant. It offers a change of paradigm and a reflection; it invites us to face it, to adopt it, and to adapt it as an accomplice of a still incipient local architecture, which has not yet managed to find its way, in many cases due to market pressures.
This project was carried out in conjunction with David Zink Yi visual artist and Thomas Paterson lighting designer.