The Alvar Aalto -designed Pavilion of Finland in the Giardini, Venice. photo: Ugo Carmeni

Open Call: Exhibition Proposals Sought for the Pavilion of Finland at the Biennale Architettura 2020 in Venice

The Open Call for proposals for Finland’s exhibition at the 17th International Architecture Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia in 2020 opens today and closes on 8 August 2019.

Archinfo Finland is looking for exhibition proposals for the Pavilion of Finland at the 17th International Architecture Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia. The selected proposal will be exhibited in the Alvar Aalto -designed Pavilion of Finland in the Giardini Biennale Park. The 2020 Biennale Architettura is the second time Archinfo Finland is responsible for the exhibition at the Pavilion of Finland.

Of the proposals submitted by 8 August, up to six will be invited for further development in Stage 2, which closes on 10 September 2019.  We accept submissions by individuals or cross-disciplinary teams. The team must include one or more members who are Finnish citizens or based in Finland.

The exhibition will be chosen by a Selection Panel including Beatrice Galilee, Independent Curator based in New York, Anniina Koivu, Writer, Curator and Educator based in Milan and Lausanne, Tuomas Siitonen, Architect, Graphic Designer and Exhibition Designer based in Helsinki, Ilkka Suppanen, Architect and Designer based in Milan and Helsinki, and Hanna Harris, Commissioner, Director of Archinfo Finland and Chair of the Panel. 

”We are looking forward to a wide range of exhibition proposals that stem from topical issues relevant to Finnish architecture while resonating with a wide international audience and the global architecture community. The winning proposal will be suited for presentation in the context of the Venice Biennale and take into consideration the special nature of the Pavilion itself,” sums Harris.

For information on how to apply, please consult the Application Guidelines:

The International Architecture Exhibition at La Biennale di Venezia alternates with the International Art Exhibition. The Biennale Arte was founded in 1895, and since 1980 architecture has its own exhibition. It has become the leading international arena for exhibiting architecture with a total of 275,000 visitors in 2018, in addition to the 15,000 professionals and members of media attending the preview days.

The curator of the 17th International Architecture Exhibition is architect and scholar Hashim Sarkis. Sarkis is Dean of the School of Architecture and Planning at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) since 2015. The Biennale Architettura is open to the public from 23 May to 29 November 2020.

In 2018, the Architecture Exhibition’s theme was ’Freespace’. Archinfo Finland presented Mind-Building, a study of over 100 years of Finnish library architecture leading up to the opening of the new Helsinki Central Library Oodi. The exhibition gained an enthusiastic reception among the media and professionals and gained a visitor record. In Spring 2019, the exhibition travelled to Finland to the Oodi library.

Designed by architect Alvar Aalto, the Pavilion of Finland was completed in 1956. Originally intended as a temporary structure, today the building is listed and one of the most renowned of the Giardini’s pavilion buildings.

Finland also participates in the Nordic Pavilion. The pavilion, designed by Sverre Fehn and completed in 1962, is jointly managed by Finland, Sweden and Norway. In 2020 Norway leads the commissioning process. The Finnish commissioning partner is the Museum of Finnish Architecture.