Open for Maintenance / German Pavilion at Venice Architecture Biennale 2023

Open for Maintenance – Wegen Umbau geöffnet is the title of Germany’s official contribution to the 18th International Architecture Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia. Official description: “Our installation is dedicated to matters of care, repair, and maintenance. Made entirely using leftover material from the Biennale Arte 2022, which left behind hundreds of tons of trash, the pavilion will become a productive infrastructure, promoting principles of reuse and circular construction in tandem with architecture’s social responsibility. By squatting the German pavilion through a series of maintenance works, the contribution renders visible processes of spatial and social care work typically hidden from the public eye. The project demonstrates that ecological sustainability is inextricably linked to the social question.”

Open for Maintenance – Wegen Umbau geöffnet / German Pavilion at Venice Architecture Biennale 2023. Venice (Italy), May 25, 2023.

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Curators: ARCH+ / SUMMACUMFEMMER / BÜRO JULIANE GREB (Anne Femmer, Franziska Gödicke, Juliane Greb, Christian Hiller, Petter Krag, Melissa Makele, Anh-Linh Ngo, Florian Summa)
Espositori: Agriluska (Luca Vallese), Assemblea Sociale per la Casa (Chiara Buratti), Bellevue di Monaco eG (Barbara Bergau, Grisi Ganzer, Till Hofmann, Denijen Pauljevic) with hirner & riehl architekten und stadtplaner BDA, Centro Sociale Rivolta (Elena Carraro, Filippo Lunian), ConstructLab (Patrick Hubmann, Alexander Römer, Peter Zuiderwijk), CRCLR House with Concular (Annabelle von Reutern), Die Zusammenarbeiter & TRNSFRM eG (Christian Schöningh), Impact Hub (Sascha Stremming), LXSY Architekten (Kim Le Roux, Margit Sichrovsky), Giorgio de Finis (RIF – Museo delle Periferie), Gustavo Fijalkow, Forward Dance Company / LOFFT – DAS THEATER, German Pavilion for Biennale Arte 2022: Relocating a Structure (Yilmaz Dziewior, Maria Eichhorn, Ellen Strittmatter), Haus der Materialisierung – Zentrum für klimaschonende Ressourcennutzung with Berliner Stadtmission (Sofie Göppl Leon), FahrArt Atelier (Benjamin Känel), Kostümkollektiv (Katrin Wittig), Kunst-Stoffe e.V. (Jan-Micha Garma, Rhea Gleba, Corinna Vosse), Mitkunstzentrale (Rahel Jakob, Julie Teuber, Nora Wilhelm), mrtz Forschungswerkstatt (Moritz Wermelskirch), Ort-schafft-Material (Jannis Schiefer, Elena Stranges), stefan is doing things (Stefan Klopfer), STREETWARE saved item (Alice Fassina), Studio Patric Dreier, ZUsammenKUNFT Berlin eG (Kim Gundlach, Andrea Hofmann), Institute of Radical Imagination (Marco Baravalle, Emanuele Braga, Gabriella Riccio) and Anna Rispoli, in cooperation with S.a.L.E. Docks, Kotti & Co (Tashy Endres, Sandy Kaltenborn), Laboratorio Occupato Morion; Rebiennale/R3B (Tommaso Cacciari, Giulio Grillo), Alessandro Schiattarella, Giovanna Silva with Angelo Boriolo (Boris), Working Group Sanitärwende with Eawag (Michel Riechmann), Finizio–Future Sanitation (Florian Augustin, Tom Kühne), German Toilet Organization, KanTe – Kollektiv für angepasste Technik (Ariane Krause, Johanna Moser, Eleftheria Xenikaki) and Sina Kamala, klo:lektiv (Sabine Bongers-Römer, Katharina Ciax, Martine Kayser), Leibniz-Institut für Gemüse- und Zierpflanzenbau (Stefan Karlowsky), NetSan, P2GreeN, urin*all (Leonie Roth, Luisa Tschumi), VaLoo.

Exhibition text (excerpt):

With Open for Maintenance – Wegen Umbau geöffnet, the curatorial team ARCH+ / SUMMACUMFEMMER / BÜRO JULIANE GREB “squats and maintains” the German Pavilion at the Biennale Architettura 2023.

Open for Maintenance is not an exhibition. It is an action framework for a new building culture. Referring to the Instandbesetzung (squatting and maintaining) movement of 1980s Berlin, it transforms the German Pavilion into a productive infrastructure—using leftover material and “spolia” from over 40 national pavilions and exhibitions of the Biennale Arte 2022. Open for Maintenance squats the German Pavilion “as found,” including Maria Eichhorn’s contribution Relocating a Structure for the Biennale Arte 2022. In this way, the Art and Architecture Biennales become spatially and program- matically interwoven for the first time.

The architectural interventions are oriented toward local needs: They include a ramp for accessibility, a material repository, a workshop, a space for meetings, a kitchenette, and an ecological bathroom. In collaboration with a broad network of Venetian and German activist groups, the contribution renders visible processes of spatial and social care work which are usually kept hidden.

Open for Maintenance transforms the monumental German Pavilion into a living place of (re)production. Assisting various groups from civil society, such as Assemblea So- ciale per la Casa (ASC), university students and crafts apprentices will help to maintain, repair, and care for social infrastructures across Venice as part of the Maintenance 1:1 workshop program. The collaborative interventions at the Pavilion and within the city are not limited to a critique of the Biennale as a format and of architecture as a disci- pline. Rather, the practically minded approach sheds light on architecture’s myriad possibilities for action in converting and designing inclusive and socioecological cities.

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