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Call for Curatorial Team for Venice Architectural Biennale Now Open

DesignSingapore Council has issued a public call to gather the curatorial team for Singapore's participation in the Venice Biennale International Architecture Exhibition 2006, the foremost international platform for architecture showcase.

2 The public call is for:
a. Proposals for content to be featured in the Singapore Pavilion;
b. Commissioning of exhibition designer;
c. Commissioning of graphic designer.

3 2004 marked Singapore's inaugural presentation at this prestigious event. Singapore was also the first South East-Asian nation to participate at the Venice Biennale, and the biennale received over 115,000 ticketed visitors. The Biennale was also visited by more than 3,000 media members from 49 countries. Singapore presented 15 architectural works by 13 firms, in a presentation that was supported by sponsors from the private sector, including Singapore Airlines and Hewlett Packard.

4 This year, the Venice Biennale will run from 9 September - 19 November 2006. The theme of the biennale is METACITIES, and explores new typologies and concepts of the city, identifying and evolving new issues in urban living. DesignSingapore Council, a division within the Ministry of Information Communications and the Arts, is the organiser for the Singapore Pavilion in 2006. Dr Milton Tan, Director of the Council, will be the Commissioner for the Singapore Pavilion.

5 Dr Tan said in his commissioning statement, "The VBIAE is the foremost exhibition platform for architectural discourse, which should always be driven by or react with context. The global rate of change is always increasing, towards an overarching statement of urbanisation. On one level, Singapore's presentation at the VBIAE could be a retrospective, evaluation or critique of its urbanity. However, this would be a real waste if we do not try to evolve through our participation at the biennale. Singapore's presentation should reread the diversity and depth of our current urban condition, come into conflict, tussle and address the larger social, cultural and economic context that surrounds architecture, and hopefully still aspire beyond tried and tested urban models to inspire us with new vision."

6 While this year's participation will explore our culture, society and economy as integral influences to Singapore's architecture, it will also address social and urban issues of significance to the local audience.

7 The most radical difference is that the content featured need not come from architects or urban planners. Sociologists, writers, artists, or other members of the public with developed views of Singapore's urbanity condition with relation to architecture are welcome to propose content by responding to this call.

8 This year's call for the curatorial team will create a unique team structure. Pulling away from the conventional top-down approach of commissioning a curator who will then decide on the content, this public call for content will determine the core of materials and ideas to be shown at the Singapore Pavilion. The content creators will then work with an appointed curator to develop the presentation of the material in an integrated, comprehensive form. The team will also work closely with the exhibition and graphic designers to provide a well-rounded, multi-disciplinary perspective.

9 Shortlisted applicants will be interviewed by the Commissioning Panel for the Singapore Pavilion, comprising prominent members from the private and public sector of architecture and urban design.

10 The call will close on 10 March 2006, Friday, at 12pm. The full public call, including submission details, is found at Annex A. A softcopy of the call is found at www.designsingapore.org.
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