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Biennale di Venezia 2014 | FUNDAMENTALS | Elements of Architecture

Elements of Architecture looks under a microscope at the fundamentals of our buildings, used by any architect, anywhere, anytime: the floor, the wall, the ceiling, the roof, the door, the window, the façade, the balcony, the corridor, the fireplace, the toilet, the stair, the escalator, the elevator, the ramp. The exhibition is a selection of the most revealing, surprising, and unknown moments from a new book, Elements of Architecture, that reconstructs the global history of each element. It brings together ancient, past, current, and future versions of the elements in rooms that are each dedicated to a single element. To create diverse experiences, we have recreated a number of very different environments – archive, museum, factory, laboratory, mock-up, simulation…”

(Rem Koolhaas describing Elements of Architecture, Fundamentals)

WINDOW | The history of the architectural element is told by models. Modern machineries are in function, in order to show how windows are realized today

FIREPLACE | On a wall, a diagram explain what a fireplace is and which are its functions: “fire + place” means not only heating and cooking, but also meeting.  That’s why it is possible to say, today, that we have several fireplaces in our houses: the radiator, the toaster…but also the television.

WALL | Models show the technology hidden behind and inside different kind walls: realized with wood, bricks, paper, concrete, …

CEILING | From the byzantine dome to steel beams, from precious decoration to hidden supply systems

ROOF | Foam models show joints and structure of the traditional Chinese roofs. On the other side of the room, some models show the modern tense-structure.

FLOOR | Several solutions are shown, from the ancient mosaics to a modern interactive floor: sensitive to pressure and weight, it reacts with colors and lights

BALCONY | Shapes from all over the world!

TOILETS | Toilets through centuries: from a simple but decorated hole to a musical and ergonomic water

CORRIDOR | The experience of the corridor: directions, angles, changing of views… always minding the orientation!

STAIRS AND RAMPS | How to go up and down with our own effort…

…or with the help of an engine | ELEVATOR AND ESCALATOR

DOOR | On a monumental gate, tags explain the structure and the elements of the door: the experience of the entrance runs parallel with the didactic knowledge.

FAÇADE | Contemporary architecture has many available solutions and materials: green façades, metal, glass…but also solar panels and reflective elements.


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